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New LIGA Premier To Kick Off In The Fall

With designs on further upping the development of players and keeping a lifelong love of the game possible throughout Northern California, LIGA NorCal, the adult soccer branch of NorCal Premier Soccer, announced Friday changes to the structure of its competitions.

Starting in the fall, NorCal Premier Soccer will launch the top division of adult soccer in the State: LIGA Premier, which will feature a European-style fall-to-spring calendar, as well as a year-long cup competition, Copa NorCal.

In the new format, which begins September 15 and concludes in May, teams are guaranteed a 20-game season, as well as at least three cup games before that competition breaks to the knockout rounds.

With a cost of $2,000 for each team, more than $5,000 will be given out in prize money. Applications to join, which are due August 15, can be found here.

“Our current membership has been looking for a longer season, which helps our clubs create more consistent training schedule to develop players,” said NorCal Director of Adult Soccer Cris Gilmore. “We want to keep players playing year round. This is going to help us create that environment.”

“We’re creating this so that our youth clubs can start to use their older youth players to supplement their first team, which is conducive to development — youth players will develop at a faster rate playing alongside and against adults,” Gilmore added.

Eventually the goal for LIGA NorCal and LIGA Premier would be to have several regional leagues around Northern California vying for spots in the top division, which would be statewide, allowing for a system of promotion and relegation that mirrors top European leagues.

In addition, every team that enters LIGA Premier will qualify for the qualifying rounds of the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup, one of the oldest cup competitions in the world.

For more information on LIGA NorCal, click here.