I started a venture with the following message,
This site needs the support of its audience, but it needs too, the support of the Regions, the State Associations, the leagues, clubs, players, and administrators of our game.
Just under a year later, while I won’t say we’ve arrived at that, I will say that we have begun to build a reputation where the die-hards of those listed above have bought in and caught on to the common goal: keep the high level amateur soccer offered by the cups alive.
Today we are here to see the evidence of how social media has become the media at the center of this coalition.
THE AMATEUR GAME
When my cousin Sasha, signed for what would be his first full season with the Major Division team at our club it was a legacy moment for him and for the organization. The amateur soccer that the two of us grew up immersed in was not recreational. It is for us to this day the core of soccer in this country. Our amateur game built what we have now. We are not the only club and the only league and the only state association that contributed.
Across the country there are examples of the high level, high class, club, league, and state competition that built the US Open Cup, the US Amateur Cup, all the cups that those cups shaped, and quite frankly the US Soccer Federation itself.
Today we group clubs like those into the USASA Elite Amateur Leagues. They describe these leagues and in turn their clubs and this game as follows,
Our elite amateur leagues have been the torch bearers of the game in the US. The fruit they produced is seen today with the increased level and participation of soccer from east to west, from north to south. (Source: www.usadultsoccer.com)
SOCIAL SOCCER & MEDIA
It starts on Friday afternoons with leagues posting current standings and weekend match schedules. Then on match day we see live updates of scores, substitutions, and other game related events.
In the best instances the series of social media use travels from player to club and from club to state to region. Before during and after matches we see the true soccer people of this nation promoting themselves and promoting the game all in one. They promote the cup competitions too.
Big, important matches are highlighted and fans are pressed to attend in support of their club. We see “sharing and liking,” from many sources at every level. When the final whistle blows a phenomenon happens. Respect for the opponent wins out over the disappointment of the loss. As the champion moves on, the finalist stays behind. Through social media the losing side becomes part of the cheering section for its once opponent.
Weaving through all this is a beautiful use of history and the past that shares and continues what the amateur game is about. Like the example above from San Francisco Soccer Football League, they share history as a form of pride in who they are and education for the next generations. Social media allows this. Every day more and more of amateur soccer embraces it.
CENTRAL TO MEDIA
I set out to be the “Media Center,” for our game using the national cup competitions as the ideal example of what soccer clubs do. I started in a world of Facebook, Twitter and others and it was a natural progression to use these tools to spread my words.
Social media is absolutely central to the soccer media that I hope U.S. Amateur Cup Soccer can champion for a long time forward. Don’t know where to look? Well of course you can see on Twitter @uscupsoccer. But don’t forget we have lists for the top clubs, leagues, the states and regions.
There is a community of these groups that follow and share each other’s soccer social media. But once in a while this community is recognized as being the fundamental, historically motivated, competitive core of an American amateur soccer landscape.