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Frequently Asked Questions
5v5 Just Play!

 What is 5v5?

Many South American clubs have long used 5v5 format for young player development. More recently the English FA nationwide youth academy program has adopted the 5v5 format for its youth programs. 

 
What’s so beneficial about a 5v5 format? 
Quite simply, players have fun while developing every aspect of their game. In the format that we use, there are no coaches or referees. With more touches on the ball, a player’s proficiency is expected to improve. Additionally, as in basketball, players learn to be actively involved even when not handling the ball. The really great part of 5v5 is that it allows players to gain confidence in themselves, while advancing their technical and tactical skills. This promotes a passion for the game as they learn winning strategies. This all occurs in a low pressure setting which provides for the highest degree of player development. 
 
How many players make up each team?
Typically teams consist of five players. Each team will normally play 4 different teams in 20-minute games providing 80 minutes of challenging play per evening.
 
How are teams formed?
Our goal is to form new teams at the start of each evening. While we do allow in-tact teams to “stay together,” our experience has found that players have a better experience playing with new players. On the first evening, each player receives a White T-Shirt and a Yellow 5v5 Just Play! T-Shirt. They are required to bring both T-Shirts each night and will put on the appropriate colored T-Shirt based on which team they have been assigned. 
 
What is the playing format?
A typical venue consists of 40 players split between 8 teams with four games going on at one time. 5v5 games are set up on 30x40 yard small-sided playing fields, allowing all 4 games to be held on one full-sided field.  Some venues have separately lined "Mini" fields.
 
We might be away one week, is it mandatory we attend every session?
No problem, participation is voluntary! We schedule 8 playing dates in July. Teams are formed based on the number of players who show up that night. Players may choose to attend all eight dates, or designate which of the eight playing dates they wish to attend. We find that parents and player appreciate the flexibility that this format offers. 
 
We can’t help you breaking the news to your child that they will have to miss a night. Seriously, we find that players enjoy the games so much that they really don’t want to miss a night.
 
Are coaches in charge of each team?
We do not use coaches. However we do provide supervision. Typically we provide one game supervisor per two fields
 (e.g., we select local college players, or big brother and big sister volunteers from the sponsoring soccer club). These players provide a good role model and we often end the season with a final evening of “coaches” versus “players” games. 
 
Should parents stay on-site?
It’s not necessary. Having said that, many parents find these games a relaxing time to watch their children play and socialize with the other parents on the sideline. This is a relaxed format that both parents and players have enjoyed over the years.
 
Carpool – drop off/pick up – does it matter if they are not on the same team?
Since teams are selected each night based on the players who are there, all players arrive and leave at the same time.
 
Who will look after the children when a parent is not there?
On site adult supervisors monitor the conduct and safety of all players. We do pay attention to ensure that players are escorted any time they leave the playing area. For example, when the restrooms are some distance from the playing area, we will arrange for supervisors to accompany the player. We encourage the buddy system and never allow 1 player to go off alone. The same holds true if the parents are not available to pick-up a child. We collect parent cell phone numbers and alternate contacts to ensure that we can communicate with responsible adults in the event that the parent is not at the facility. All children are under our supervision until their ride arrives.
 
What Release Forms must be completed? 
Application and Release Forms are made available to parents during the on-line registration process. 
These forms are also available via e-mail and at the site.

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