For those of you who are not aware, ‘travel soccer’ is an exciting and growing sport where players are allowed to travel with their teams to tournaments around the world. The concept behind this type of competition is for clubs to go on a spending spree, buying the best kits and amenities allowed within the world of sports. As you may imagine, the demand for travel soccer teams is huge, and there are plenty of opportunities for you to be a part of the action.
The following article is a short guide to help get you started in this exciting sport. We will cover everything from when to expect your first opportunity to how to go about preparing for a journey like this. So, let’s get started.
The Importance Of Being An Official Partner
In order to qualify for a spot on a travel team, you will need to be an official partner of a club that is a part of the world governing body for soccer, FIFA. Being a partner will provide you with many benefits, the most significant of which is that you will be able to access exclusive deals and discounts that the club’s partners and members enjoy. Additionally, you will have the opportunity to engage with fans and encourage them to follow your team’s social media channels. The more engaged fans are, the greater the chance of them being drawn into the action on game days, increasing revenue and enhancing brand loyalty. Finally, being a travel partner gives you the chance to be flexible with regard to when you play, as the schedule will be dictated by the needs of the team.
Familiarizing Yourself With The Roster
Every travel soccer team will have a roster, made up of 20 players, with space for substitutes. When filling out your application to be a travel partner, you will need to submit a roster which will be checked for validity. During this process, the club’s management and coaching staff will go through your bio-data, looking for any important information relating to your health, physical fitness and experience. This information will determine the type of accommodations and meals that you will need to endure while on the road. Some of the things that they will look for include, but are not limited to, your age, weight, height, heart-rate, whether or not you are a morning-person or night-person, and if you are a smoker or non-smoker. After submitting your application, you will receive a confirmation email, which you must then answer. This is a precursor to being approved as a travel partner.
Choosing The Right Club
Nowadays, getting on a travel team is a lot easier than you might think. With the growth of social media and esports, the world of sports is becoming more connected than ever before. This means that you have a lot of choice when it comes to where you want to play and who you want to be with. The best thing to do if you’re deciding which club to join is to look at a variety of factors, such as the location you want to play in, the pitch size, the stadium, locker rooms, amenities, and most importantly, the vibe. The following are some of the things that you should consider before signing with a club:
This one seems pretty obvious, but it’s crucial to point out that not all locations are created equal. You want to be as close to your family and friends as possible, but you also need to consider where you will feel most comfortable. Do you want to be in a big city, where there are lots of people and plenty to do? Or would you prefer a smaller town, where you can get to know the locals and make lifelong friends? The answer to this question will largely depend on you and what you prefer. Remember, you are signing up for a brand-new experience, and although it will be exciting, it will also be tiring, so make sure that you’re prepared for the physical demands of the job. Cities such as London, New York and Paris have the advantage of having many sporting venues close to each other, making it easy for you to switch venues, games and competitions whenever you want. Conversely, smaller towns and remote locations can make it more difficult to do the same. In areas where travel is restricted by airline policies and rules, teams are often restricted to a maximum number of games per year, which makes it difficult to change venues and meet other teams in your destination. If this is something that you want to avoid, then a bigger, more established club may not be the best fit for you.
This one may seem obvious too, but just because a pitch is big doesn’t mean that it’s easy to play on or good for soccer. If you’ve ever watched an NFL game, then you know that stadiums can be quite a bit bigger than the ones that they host. That being said, a large pitch does have several advantages. It allows for more scoring opportunities and allows for longer games, which generally means more revenue for the club. This brings us to our next point.
The type of stadium will largely depend on where you are playing. If you’re in Europe, you will almost certainly be playing in a stadium that is either fully or partially owned by a soccer club. European stadiums, due to the amount of revenue that they generate, will generally be a bit more modern and flashy, and may include everything from luxury boxes, to corporate suites, to individual seats that can be bought by the public. If this sounds like something that you’re interested in, then you should look at the venues that your chosen club owns or has a major share of, as they may well be used for your journey.
This one should be self-explanatory, but just because the club has nice, new, fully equipped locker rooms, doesn’t mean that they are inviting you to dive right in without any practice. Just because your team is traveling to Germany for a couple of games this year, doesn’t mean that you’re going to be able to jump into the action without any preparation. Even if your team is made up of professionals, who are used to traveling and training hard, there will still be things that they need you to help with. Be sure to look at the clubs that you’re applying to join, and see what type of training facilities and equipment they have available.
This one is pretty self-explanatory too. If you’re applying to play in a well-established and reputable club, then you should expect to find a variety of amenities, from top-notch training facilities to pools, to restaurants and bars. The better the amenities, the greater the chance of you having a good time during your stay. If this is something that you’re looking for, then these are the types of clubs that you should avoid, as they may not have the necessary amenities in place.
This one is probably the most important of the bunch. Do you want to join a club that is fun-loving and enjoys playing music and partying during and after games? Or do you want to play for a club that prioritizes training and wins games? The answer to this question will largely depend on you and what you prefer. Some of the best clubs in the world have a very strong VIBE, which you can sense even if you’re thousands of miles away. Do you want a club that is going to be fun to be a part of? Or do you want a team that is going to provide you with the best experience possible, both on and off the field? Think about what you prefer and choose accordingly. If this is something that you want to avoid, then these are the types of clubs that you should join, as they will prioritise the physical demands of the sport over everything else.
Travel As A Coach Or A Player
Depending on your experience and whether or not you’re interested in coaching, you may be asked to take on a dual role as both a player and a coach. Regardless of whether or not you’re equipped to do so, the best thing to do is to say yes. Just because you’re a professional doesn’t mean that you have to sit on the bench, waiting to be subbed in. The opportunity to coach and play, even if it’s just one game, is still an exciting one, and something that you may never get the chance to do again. Think about what you prefer and choose accordingly. If this is something that you want to avoid, then these are the types of clubs that you should apply to, as they may ask you to spend your time either training or waiting to play.