by Gulf Coast Soccer Club
Coaches Code of Conduct and Policies


This Code of Conduct and Policies applies to all regular season games, area tournament games and practices. Any person found to be in violation of the Code of Conduct or the spirit of the Code of Conduct; will be held accountable by the penalties outlined below.

We want to ensure that games are fair, positive and enjoyable experiences for all of the children and adults involved. A soccer game should be friendly and unifying – a spirited social and athletic occasion for players, coaches, referees and spectators. To clarify expectations of coach conduct, we jointly expect

All coaches are expected to conform to this code of conduct.

¢Before, during and after the game, be an example of dignity, patience and positive spirit.
¢Before a game, introduce yourself to the opposing coach and to the referee.
¢During the game, you are responsible for the sportsmanship of your players. If one of your players is disrespectful, irresponsible or overly aggressive, take the player out of the game at least long enough for him/her to calm down.
¢During the game, you are also responsible for the conduct of the parents of your players.It is imperative to explain acceptable player and parent behavior in a preseason meeting.
¢Encourage them to applaud and cheer for good plays by either team. Discourage them and you may need to be forceful and direct from yelling at players and the referee.
¢During the game, you are also responsible for the conduct of spectators rooting for your team.
¢Treat the referees with respect, not matter what the call. During the game, do not address the referee at all. If you have an issue with any actions of a referee, seek the assistance of the Board member on the premises. Gulf Coast Soccer Club ensures that a Board Member is present at every game.
¢After the game, thank the referee and ask your players to do the same.
¢Coach clean, skillful, honest and sportsmanlike soccer by stressing playing hard and developing the individual player’s skills, not winning at all costs.
¢Help maintain a climate of enjoyment among spectators by stopping negative remarks and/or harassment of players, referees and other spectators. If you are not able to accomplish this in a civil manner, locate a board member to address the issue for you. Do not address these concerns as they apply to the opposing team. Find a board member and they will address the issue.
¢In dealing with team members, maximize praise and minimize criticism. Make corrections slowly and calmly in a manner tailored to the individual.
¢Coach talented and non-talented players with equal vigor. Allow players more than their required minimum playing time. Division IV and Division III players shall participate in every game for at least one-half of the game. There shall be no exceptions to this rule except for player misconduct on the field or at practice. If player misconduct results in a player not playing 50% of any game, the coach must notify the Director of Coaching, the parents, the opposing coach and the referee. In this division, no player may be penalized for not attending a practice or arriving late at a practice. The children in this age division cannot drive and rely on the adults to provide their transportation. The Club is not in the practice of punishing the children for events that are entirely within the control of the adults. Coaches who violate this rule may lose all coaching privileges
¢Minimize coaching from the sidelines during the games. Screaming during the game accomplished nothing.
¢Players and Coaches will occupy one side of the playing field. Spectators will occupy the opposite side of the field directly across from their team.
¢Coaches will stay within the technical area (white coaches’ box) in front of their bench. Coaches will not wonder up and down the side line.
¢No adults are allowed on the field during the playing of the game. A coach may bring to the attention of the referee an injury or a problem with a player in a respectful manner.
¢No adults or spectators are allowed behind any goal for any reason except to replace a ball that has left the field of play.
We stress two points:

Referees – especially young and inexperienced ones – are like your players and yourself, in that they need time to develop. You can play an important role in helping them to improve by letting them concentrate on the game. You can help by encouraging them, by accepting their inevitable, occasional mistakes and by offering constructive post-game comments. On the other hand, you could discourage and demoralize the referees by criticizing their decisions, by verbally abusing them and inciting – or even accepting – your own players’ overly aggressive behavior.

Your example is powerful, for better or worse. If you insist on fair play, if you concentrate on your players’ enjoyment of the game and their overall, long term development, and if you support the referee, your players and their parents will notice. If you encourage (or allow) your players to play outside the rules, if you’re overly concerned about results, and if you criticize the referee harshly, your players and their parents will also notice. Think about what you’re doing during a game! Uphold the Spirit of the Game! If you follow the expectations described above, the spirit of the game will be alive and well in Massachusetts and will grow, along with the enjoyment of all. Coaches who don’t follow the expectations described above will be disciplined or removed


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