Letter from CEO Kevin Payne: Looking ahead to the 2020-21 NPL season
July 2, 2020
Dear NPL league directors,
First and foremost, I hope you and your family are safe and healthy during these challenging times. I very much enjoy meeting with you all on the sidelines of our NPL and ENPL championships, and I’ve missed being able to do that this summer. That said, as we’ve embraced virtual communications over the past few months, I remain available to you in all those capacities to discuss concerns, questions or just to share updates.
As we approach the 2020-21 season, there are plenty of reasons to be excited about the NPL platform. Since 2012, the NPL has elevated youth standards in so many facets, as it has applied player and coach developmental principles in a club-focused environment. It’s also been a successful platform for increasing college exposure of our NPL athletes. Those efforts – thinking primarily about our players in a way that grows clubs around the country – are the reasons why we’re thrilled to have 20 NPL member leagues for the 2020-21 season.
In recent weeks, we’ve announced the creations of the Desert States NPL and the Pennsylvania Regional Club League, and we’ve showcased the strength of NorCal Premier, United Soccer Clubs and NPL West. In the days to come, we’ll share more good news about the growth of the NPL, including Minnesota NPL, Florida NPL, Red River NPL and the South Atlantic Premier League. We take great joy in sharing your successes nationally, so please don’t hesitate to contact us for assistance in doing that.
Recently, one of our members, which is a for-profit league, has chosen to go in a different direction for reasons of their own. We wish their players well.
Our Players First philosophy has been entrenched in the NPL’s core values before the Players First initiative was even launched. We continue to be unrelenting in our commitments to those Players First pillars: Club Development, Coaching Development, Player Development, Parent Engagement & Education and Player Health & Safety.
And US Club Soccer’s foundation – 1) soccer people making soccer decisions, 2) local decisions are made locally and 3) professional management – is what makes the NPL an attractive platform for years to come. In looking towards the future, we’re working closely with all our partners to complement our own offerings with their best-in-class resources. These partners include: LaLiga for expanded coaching education, ScoutingZone for increased college exposure and ECNL to clarify the nation’s competitive structure.
Thank you for all you do – both on and off the field. You have developed an exceptional community of like-minded clubs within your league. Multiplied across 20 NPLs throughout the country, our collective strength is extraordinary.
ABOUT US CLUB SOCCER
A National Association member of the U.S. Soccer Federation, US Club Soccer fosters the growth and development of soccer clubs in order to create the best possible environment for players of all ages.
Anchored by Players First and its five pillars of Club Development, Coaching Development, Player Development, Parent Engagement & Education and Player Health & Safety, US Club Soccer offers registration, league- and cup-based competition platforms, player identification and a variety of other programming, resources and services.
US Club Soccer is sponsored by Nike, DICK'S Sporting Goods and Gatorade.