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OurCommitment to Open Communication: We know that our families will have many questions about this news, and we respect and welcome questions and feedback. While there are still many details to work through, we will keep this page updated.
Plymouth Soccer Association and Wayzata Soccer Club are merging to form a new club together. The Board of Directors of both clubs have each passed resolutions to direct a subcommittee of our respective boards to finalize an agreement to fuse Plymouth Soccer Association and Wayzata Soccer Club into an entirely new club to better serve our community.
Why? What is the goal?
Combining the clubs will make for a stronger, more sustainable soccer entity and, ultimately, one more able to serve our community today and into the future. The new club will serve nearly 3000 players (1300 Recreation, 1300 Competitive and 400 Young Champions/Future Stars). Together, our clubs serve Plymouth, Wayzata and surrounding communities, with players feeding into over 30 different high schools. Clearly, bigger is not better, yet we feel that an appropriate infrastructure to support these numbers and more is both achievable and manageable.
We have every intention for the new club to be a leader in Minnesota soccer. We define ‘leader’, in this regard, as the club that offers the highest quality strategic soccer programs, provides superior training and player development opportunities, and demands the highest standards in its on and off-field administration.
What is the name of the new club? What are our colors?
Critical to the plan is the decision on branding for the new club. Club name, team colors, and messaging which supports our commitment to the initiative, respects our mutual legacies, and shows support for our community is essential. An announcement regarding branding for the new club will be made in the coming days. We don’t know yet what the name of the new club will be, but we do know that it won’t be Plymouth Soccer Association or Wayzata Soccer Club.
Understandably, both clubs have a strong history and a lot of pride. Our intention is not now, and never will be, to erase that history or ignore the pride, but to build on it through the energy created by fusing into a single club. Partnering together will undoubtedly demand compromise, as does any successful relationship, but doing so will also allow us to maximize the use of our mutual resources and accomplish more for player, family, and community than either club could achieve on its own.
How did this discussion start? I thought WSC and PSA didn’t get along?
While we acknowledge that our two clubs have historically had a healthy rivalry, discussions between us over the last nine months have increasingly revolved around the question of “How can we better serve our players and families?” The question has led us to working together on several policies across both clubs, such as reducing the number of player transfers/releases, improving dome time transitions between the two clubs, working together to lease and share the 101 practice fields, and ordering and sharing the expense of new goals for the site. Ultimately, these seemingly small successes in working together have led to serious discussion centered on fusing the two clubs into one.
Have you thought through the details?
We have spent a considerable amount of time looking at this opportunity from every imaginable angle. We’ve brainstormed on, and talked through the challenges that would be faced throughout the unification process and beyond. We’ve considered that we already compete with each other for players, teams and coaches; that we share referees, fields and facilities and, most importantly, that we share the same community of families with soccer-playing children. We’ve concluded that unifying these two long-standing, highly-successful clubs into one club is in the best interest of our players, our families, our community, and the sport of soccer as a whole.
We expect to bring the clubs together as soon as possible, but all the details have not been worked out. At this time, we are working toward joint 2015 tryouts for Competitive teams at the end of July, and combined teams for Fall 2014 and Spring/Summer 2015. For our Recreation program, no significant changes will occur. For our Developmental programs, we are still working on a plan for Fall 2014 and for putting the Future Stars and Young Champions programs together.
Who will be the staff? What about <insert any name here>?
First of all, the Coaching Directors from both clubs (Tony Peszneker and Jon Lowery) have been included in the discussions and involved from the beginning. Both of them are in support of the merger, and will be part of the new club.
Through the course of our evaluation initiative, we’ve established the following:
Officers on the new Board of Directors:
Executive Director (ED): Maureen Brick
Director of Coach and Player Development (DOCPD): Jon Lowery
Our next task will be to complete the administrative team supporting the ED and establish a team of on-field directors and assistants in support of the DOCPD. Rounding out the Board of Directors for the new club will be established through future elections for non-Executive Board roles.
Completing the state and federal legal tasks and fulfilling the Minnesota Youth Soccer Association requirements will be our first duties.
I just bought a new uniform! Do I have to buy a new uniform & warmups?
Both PSA and WSC ordered new uniforms in 2014. We are still working on the branding for the new club, and the uniform question. We know this is a big expense for families. Our hope is to find a sponsor that would help cover costs for new uniforms. We don’t know the answer to the uniform question right now, but hope to make progress on this in the next month.
When are Tryouts? How will they work?
We will have tryout dates, times and details published by June 20. We will try to change previously-published dates as little as possible.
What will happen to my soccer program? (Recreation / Young Champions / Future Stars / Competitive)?
These decisions and details have not been finalized, and will be worked on together throughout the unification process.
How will this affect my player? Will he/she still be on the same team?
Tryouts for 2015 competitive teams will be held together at the end of July. Players will be evaluated and placed on teams. As is already the case in both clubs, there are no guarantees as to what team your child will make for next year. As a merged club, we will most likely end up with both prior-WSC and prior-PSA players on teams. With the two clubs combined, there will be more opportunities to place players at the correct age and playing level.
How many teams will the new club have at any given age level? For example, if PSA has 6 teams now and WSC has 4 teams now, how many teams will the new club have? Will there be fewer spots for players?
Our intention is to have a team for every player. In the example given, we would expect to field 10 teams. Working together, we will be able to more accurately place players on a team of the correct age and level.