Leaside-East Toronto Soccer Club


193 Randolph Rd, Toronto,ON, M4G 3S6, Telephone 416 481 6425 Email John@leasidesoccer.net

WHAT IS A HOUSE LEAGUE

A house league for children and adults means that everyone who registers, plays; you do not make the team.
In a house league the players are split up into teams based on who they want to play with, their sex, age,
which parent has volunteered to coach and team age distribution in an attempt to keep teams even. There
is no guarantee that the teams will be equal nor that players desire to play with particular players can
be accomodated.

A house league depends on parents who volunteer to coach youth teams. The club cannot guarantee that
every team will have a coach as we depend on those volunteers. In those rare instances where there is
not a coach, it is important that the parents pull together to make the team work so that their
children will have an enjoyable time.

In organizing a house league the principal rule is to do what parents want for their children. Sometimes
some parents lose sight of the importance to keep teams even in ability. This can result in teams winning
every week and by large scores. This result causes great difficulty for those organizing due to the complaints
of other teams. To make a house league function smoothly, it is imperative that parents and coaches be fair
in their requests so that all teams will be equal in ability.

Sometimes coaches can bring to a house league a discipline and set of expectations which create very strong
teams. This fact is normal and acceptable; however, in that situation where weaker players are not given an
equal playing time, the whole raison d'etre of a house league is lost. The reason for a house league is not
found in the winning of the game but in the playing of the game; the intangible result of which is that every
player's feeling of self worth is reinforced because they were an integral part of the team. No set of rules
or policing of those rules can possibly control this attitude- the parents and coach of the team need to work
this out on a week by week basis recognizing that each person has their own unique perspective on this situation
where the desire to win is put in conflict with fielding a player who is not strong. The decisions made may not
always be perfect, but in general to make everthing work the person in charge of the team should be given the
support and recognition from the parents, especially in front of the children

Some people are disappointed in what they find in a house league. In our soccer club (1) there are no rules
concerning attendance. (2) Our league runs continuously from mid May to the 3rd week in August. Some teams
will default games. Those people who expect the same level of committment as their own will be disappointed.
There are soccer clubs adjacent to us which operate a season in May - June which might be more appropriate for
them. We do expect there to be a game iregardless as to how many players have turned up. (3) some teams will be
weak. By the time this is discovered it is usually too late to make changes in the teams without disturbing other
children. (4) training is based on volunteers, some of whom have never played soccer. Those who desire a high
level of training are encouraged not to register in the house league but to try out for a competitive team or
enter a soccer academy training program. (5) Sometimes some parents of children on the team will take exception
to the decisions of the volunteer coach; as an example the amount of playing times for their child. While the
club tries to accomodate all parents wishes at all times, the club will not mediate between parents. Given the
essential role of the volunteer coach, it is important for parents to accept the coach's decisions. (6) In our
club we try very hard to register every one who wants to play. The reasoning is that what we have should be
available to all children. If we add a 12th player on a team or if we add an extra team no one is particularly
inconvenienced and in the process we have made one child happy.