Division 1 Playing Time Guidelines

 

Playing Time Protocol 

Playing Time Percentages for Players

U9-12:            45% of a game

U13-19:          33% of a game 

If a player falls short of the percentage time guidelines in one game then it is up to the coach to make up the time for that player in another game. Playing time percentages are specific to a season (including tournament and league games) – not to each individual game. 

State Cup exception: During State Cup play coaches may use their discretion in regards to the player playing time percentages to afford the team the best opportunity to win based on their understanding of their team’s dynamics.

Playing Time for Goalkeepers

Is it optimal for a coach to split time with two keepers. If this is not possible then each keeper should be given opportunities to play full games. When a keeper struggles, the coach reserves the right to sit that keeper in favor of one that will give the team the best chance to be successful. 

State Cup exception: During State Cup play coaches may use their discretion to stay with one keeper for the duration of the tournament. 

Playing Time Discussion Protocol

Players and parents have the right to ask their coach about concerns regarding playing time and coaches have the responsibility to answer these players and parents with clear and concise direction as to what the player needs to focus on in order to gain more playing time. 

However it is not appropriate for a player or parent to approach the coach before, during, or immediately after a game regarding playing time concerns. An appropriate venue to discuss a player’s playing time is for the parent to make an appointment with the coach to discuss their concerns via a phone call or a face-to-face meeting at a later date.

If a coach is approached by a parent during any of these times surrounding the game, the coach will ask the parent to make an appointment at a later date to discuss the issue. If a parent is unable to comply with this request they will be brought before the Honor the Game Committee and dealt with on a case-by-case basis.

If a coach refuses to meet with the parent to discuss playing time, the parent should bring this issue to the attention of the Division 1 Coaching Directors to facilitate the conversation. Coaches in violation will be dealt with by the Division 1 Coaching Directors on a case-by-case basis.

As a general rule, this protocol can also be applied in many instances when a parent or player has questions or concerns regarding other issues such as: 

  • unfair treatment of a player by coaches with regard to PCA and a negative training environment
  • the development of a player as indicated by the Division 1 curriculum
  • logistics, tournaments, and all other day-to-day playing options of the team

However, a phone call or meeting with the coach is not an apporpriate venue for a parent to give input on:

  • team lineups
  • substitution rotations for players
  • discussion of which players should play what positions (conversations must remain centered on your player only)
  • number of practices per week (two practices a week is the established guideline for coaches)
  • when and where the team conducts practice

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US Club Soccer

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