Last updated on July 29, 2015.
1. When did the Fargo Soccer Club form?
The Fargo Soccer Club (FSC) formed on May 3, 2007.
2. Can children from outside Fargo play on FSC teams?
Yes. The FSC serves any child in North Dakota or Minnesota. We focus primarily on Cass and Clay counties.
3. What age groups play for the FSC?
For recreational soccer, we currently offer pre-k through 6th grade programs. For competitive (traveling) soccer, we offer programs from Under-9 (U9) through U19. We will entertain any requests from any player or group of players to affiliate with the FSC.
4. When do you play, i.e. what seasons?
The FSC recreational leagues play separate seasons in the Spring and the Fall. Our Fall season runs approximately August 25 through October 8 and consists of 1 practice and 1 game per week for a total of 6 games. Our Spring season runs approximately April 20 through June 20 and consists of 1 practice and 1 game per week for a total of 8-10 games. We also offer winter indoor clinics/leagues and scrimmages. Our competitive teams play separate seasons; Summer and Fall. The Fall season runs August 25 through October 20. Our Summer season runs mid March through July. We have winter indoor competitive clinics and indoor traveling competitions. Starting in Fall 2014, we will run an indoor high school league; one for girls and one for boys.
5. Do you carry insurance?
The FSC is fully insured by virtue of our membership in the various national soccer associations. This includes liability coverage. Individual insurance is supplemental to a player's regular health insurance coverage in nearly all cases.
6. How frequently do practices occur?
For recreational soccer, practices are held once per week. For competitive soccer, Fall practices are 2 or 3 times per week. During our Summer season, we start with indoor training in March, twice weekly. When we start to practice outdoors in late April, it is 2 or 3 times per week. By late May we have 3 to 4 soccer events (practices or games) per week. When we have weekend tournaments we may have 2 practices and 4 games in a week.
7. What are the costs?
All soccer players are required to have their own shin guards, ball and water bottle. Shin guards range in price from $5 to $50. Balls range in price from $10 to $150. Generally, the lower priced equipment is more than sufficient, especially below the high school level. Each player must have a uniform from the Fargo Soccer Club. Recreational uniforms (reversible jersey, socks, shorts) are currently priced at $40/child and can be reused for any season. Competitive uniforms are currently priced at $110/child and can be reused for any season. Our U9 teams use the recreational uniform which costs $40. Registration fees for recreational soccer are typically between $55 and $60 per season. Registration fees for competitive soccer are currently between $295/player to $440/player for the summer season and between $140/player and $210/player for the Fall season. Travel costs such as hotels, transportation, food, etc. are the responsibility of the individual families. The competitive soccer fees include tournament registration fees.
8. How do your traveling teams pick tournaments?
Each team meets in the Winter and chooses tournaments for their Summer season. The Club does not choose tournaments for each team. The parents and coaches on each team make the decision on tournaments. In this way, the needs and desires of each team are met. With our current fee schedule, each U10 and older team can choose up to 3-4 tournaments. Our U9 teams choose any 2 tournaments but can also choose more at an increased cost. In the Fall season, we play in the NSC Fall Cup in Blaine, MN although in 2014 there will be more choices available.
9. Why do your competitive teams play in 3 or 4 tournaments each Summer when most clubs play 4 or 5 tournaments?
There are only so many local tournaments so every tournament represents a financial sacrifice for each family in terms of transportation, lodging and meals. By playing non-tournament weeknight games within a 100 mile radius of Fargo, we avoid costly lodging expenses of far-away weekend tournaments. We also free up 2-3 Summer weekends for families who like to enjoy lake cabins or other family outings. Clubs who play exclusively or predominantly in weekend tournaments suffer from other factors. See the excellent articles on tournaments in our Documents section. Regardless, our combination of tournaments and weeknight "league" games provides the same number of games as clubs who only play in weekend tournaments at greatly reduced expense.
10. I don't know anything about soccer but I received an email about coaching my child's recreational team. What should I do?
Coach! If you have time, i.e. you don't travel extensively for work or you have to work late weeknights or Saturday afternoons, then you should consider coaching. Especially at the pre-school or kindergarten level, soccer coaching is mostly about your attitude and teaching fundamentals. If you can create a fun environment where each player can feel good about themselves, strive to be a good soccer player and have fun, then you are being a good coach. If you motivate by yelling or browbeating, then don't coach. The Club will provide with you training prior to the season. Coaching is very rewarding.
11. Will my child play as much other kids on the team?
For recreational soccer, the answer is yes. Each child should play equally and each child should play every position. Some kids don't want to play goalkeeper and we don't force kids to play goalkeeper. For competitive soccer, the answers vary. Up to a certain age the FSC policy is equal playing time. At some age, players who exhibit a stronger work ethic and/or skill level will see proportionately more playing time. Playing time is also based on attendance, attitude and behavior.
12. Can I coach my child's team?
The FSC believes that parent coaches make the best coaches. We monitor each team for fairness of playing time to address the common compliant that the coach's kid gets more playing time. Frankly, parent coaches who know the rules on playing time are very good at following the rules. Parent coaches are highly motivated to see their child's team succeed. Parent coaches are more reliable than non-parent coaches. Non-parent coaches typically have a much better soccer background and can provide superior skills demonstration and instruction. That is why we try to pair up a parent coach with a younger, non-parent coach on our competitive teams. For our recreational teams, coaching is currently exclusively done by parents.
13. Does the FSC perform background checks on coaches?
Yes. Every competitive team coach has at least one background check performed by the Club. Random background checks are performed on recreational team coaches.
14. What other safety precautions does the FSC take?
The FSC requires all volunteers to submit a volunteer screening application. The FSC has a policy requiring that at least 2 unrelated adults be present at each and every soccer event, e.g. game, practice, transportation to ensure the safety of the youth player and the volunteer.
15. How do the FSC coaches differ from other coaches in the FM area?
Nearly all our recreational coaches have already undergone a 2-hour coaching education program before they step on the field with their team. Recreational coaches at some of the other clubs do not enjoy this important benefit. Many of our coaches are enrolling in extensive, i.e. 18-hour coaching education programs to enhance their expertise. The club encourages this and pays for this. This does not happen with most other clubs.
16. How many kids does each coach have on their team?
For our pre-school and kindergarten teams, we usually have 2 coaches and 8 kids per team. Therefore, the coaching ratio for our pre-K and Kindergarten teams is 4:1 or better for nearly all teams and there are no more than 8 players per team. For other area clubs, the ratio is more like 8:1 to 16:1. In a scenario where 1 coach is trying to coach 8-16 kids, personal attention by a coach is virtually non-existant.
17. How long are the two recreational seasons, Spring and Autumn?
The Spring season is 10 weeks in length. The Autumn season is 6 weeks in length. The other local clubs have a 5 week Spring season and a 6 week Autumn season.
18. Can my child "play up" if I want them to do so?
The "play up" scenario happens when a child is a gifted soccer player who is not particularly challenged by playing with other children their age. Unlike other local clubs we will gladly allow players to "play up" to the level of their ability. However, in instances when we interplay recreationally with the local clubs, we may be required to only play kids with kids their own age.
19. How do you form recreational soccer teams?
We generally form teams from neighborhoods. That makes practices more convenient. We don't keep the same kids together on the same team every season because we want kids exposed to a variety of coaches and a variety of teammates. We will attempt to honor one mutual friend request. Siblings in the same age category are placed on the same team. Relatives can be placed on the same team. Special circumstances are considered.
20. Do you offer scholarships?
Yes and no. Technically, there is no such thing as a "scholarship" since scholarly work does not earn you something in soccer. We have provided subsidies to disadvantaged children and we work with Metro Youth Partnership (MYP) on subsidies. It is for kids in grades K-12 in Fargo, Moorhead and West Fargo so that they can participate in fee-based activities of their choosing. It covers $50/year/child and there is a simple application process. Contact the MYP at 218.299.5437 or via www.metroyouthpartnership.org. For more information on subsidies, contact Matt Noah at either
21. When and where will my child's team practice?
For rec teams, practice locations, days and times are chosen by each team. Frequently, people want to know weeks or months in advance when their child will practice. The club does not control this decision. Instead, about 3-5 weeks before the season starts, the club places kids on rosters and informs the parents of the players on each team of this assignment. The coach should then contact each player's parents and work out an optimum day, time and location for weekly practice. Not everyone will necessarily be happy with the decision of the team and the coach. If a hard (not soft) conflict occurs, the affected player can possibly be transferred to a different team with a more accommodating schedule. Games are played on weekends (Saturdays and some Sundays) in the Fall and before Memorial Day weekend in the Spring. After Memorial Day, games are held on weeknights. For competitive teams, the team meets and decides on practice nights. In some cases, the coach may simply set the schedule that fits his schedule.