2004- First 40 years

The Pioneers of AYSO have observed the impact of AYSO growth upon the entrepreneurs who invest into professional soccer. In the 1960s, AYSO burst forward in Southern California adding to the national status of youth soccer, and adding to the strength of youth soccer on the East Coast, youth soccer would initiate growth in the professional level. The potential of the number of fans, down the road, excited financial investors into professional soccer. While the primary fans of the 1970s were the foreign immigrants, the exhibition games of international soccer teams gathered new additional fans in the USA and indicated a potential successful future for professional soccer in the USA.
 
Before AYSO youth soccer reached 1,000,000 graduates, the foundation of AYSO Philosophies intrigued long range professional soccer league planners . Although NASL and ASL and others had some bright spots, more time and success in youth soccer growth was needed including growth at the high school and college levels.  The timing of the Major League Soccer was at the earliest potential success point. The cities selected for the MLS had not only soccer traditionalists but also successful youth soccer organizations forming soccer enthusiasts.
 
The breakthrough for youth soccer growth in the USA occurred when AYSO decided that the USSF with its mandatory procedures for competition to be controlled at the State level,  within each State, would stifle the exporting of AYSO youth soccer across the nation. The 1960s and 1970s meetings between USSF officials and AYSO  national officers not only required adherence to the USSF youth procedures but also finances from each AYSO  player to USSF National operations. As a result, FIFA banned for life some of the AYSO key personnel. (see Howard Krollfeifers article in the year 1966-67 of the National; history). Fortunately, the American traditionalists joined with the new born enthusisasts of the Pioneers of AYSO to offset what would have been a very limnited growth of operations for soccer in the  USA..
 
It must be clearly stated that the AYSO Philosophies generated in the first ten years of AYSO became not only the hallmarks for AYSO soccer growth but also impacted the USSF youth soccer program to update their standards and together, the future of soccer in the USA moved forward. The Pioneers of AYSO are a blessing to the overall strength coming forth and an improved working relationship amongst all is vital to the future of soccer at all levels in the Americas.
 
It was, and still is, the success of both the AYSO Philosophies and the multiple youth soccer organizations' desire to grow youth soccer in the USA that has resulted in millions of
youth players graduating into high school, colleges, and professional soccer via the success of the American Way for the sport of soccer
 
On August 15, 2014, AYSO celebrates her 50th Anniversary and the unlimited number of parents who volunteered to support their own offspring is just the beginning. Starting out with EVERYONE PLAYS,and EVERYONE INVITED to play on BALANCED TEAMS while placing YOUTH BEFORE SOCCER, the growth of soccer in the USA has resulted in a magnificent growth for the sport that can be played by all. It is important that AYSO maintain its unified, independent strength in order to achieve the optimum success that is surely to come in the next 50 years and beyond. 
 
Youth soccer is fast becoming the most popular sport in America for our youth. High school soccer is rapidly moving up to be the number one participation sport. Colleges are attaining the financial level where the sport is becoming self-sufficient. Olympic soccer, especially womens' soccer, has become the trade mark of the American Way from youth soccer to high school to college soccer. Now, the professional level of Anerican Soccer in the United States is filling stadiums and the Major League Soccer story is worthy of study to determine the impact of AYSO in all aspects.  American soccer players are now invading leagues in other countries and foreign leagues are well received on American television.
  
Of all the successes, the Pioneers of AYSO lists the leadership skills earned by every AYSO player as the greatest contribution to fully justify each and every player and parents' dedication within AYSO. There are no limits for the successes in youth soccer in the Americas. The advantages for the growth of AYSO youth soccer are many including finances, player size, early age introduction, athletic skills development for the individual and the team as a unit, leadership development within the inner game of soccer, etc.. 
 
Most importantly, the world stage for the USA to compete, country versus country, in a truly international sport loved around the world, is an upward move for sports minded citizens of the United States. The Pioneers of AYSO in their early years decided to introduce the American Way for soccer and despite strong opposition with stifling intentions, the Pioneers of AYSO carried the task of introducing the sport of soccer to the millions of American youth who otherwise would not have a sport designed as their own. In the past 40 years, the optimum procedure for the Pioneers of AYSO has been tested, found successful, and is destined to reach every elementary school student throughout this great country.
 
 The number of Amerucans playing at the professional level in foreign leagues is an excellent measuring stick for the growth of soccer in the United States. There are 94 American players playing in 32 foreign  professonal leagues. While there are many foreign players playing in the American Major League Soccer, it won't be long before the quality and pay scale in the United States will welcome back the Americans playing in foreign country leagues. It must be considered healthy to import and export soccer players  simply because, in this early stage, the soccer players income increases in both directions and especially as attendance increases in the USA..     
 
One of the benefits of the American full implementation into worldwide soccer is the evolution of American playing strategies into the sport of soccer. With American coaches of multiple ethnicities and their national skills melting together here in the United States, an American influence on playing will come forth. In the early years of AYSO when the Balanced  Team philosophy was introduced the team contest scores witnessed the one-sided scores disappearance and, in fact, more scoring resulted. With the historic knowledge that soccer worldwide has become more defensive and thereby less scoring, the desire for more scoring but not one-sided is high on the list of American fans. 
 
To successfully grow soccer in the USA, not only must our former youth players want to attend soccer games as fans but also non-soccer experienced sports fans become enthralled with the game.  Of all the thrills in the game of soccer, the scoring of goals will always be number one. In order to accomplishe this goal, the advantages to the defensive player must be balanced by the advantages to the offensive players. Today, the "professional foul" is destructive to the strategy of scoring. Even when soccer referees call the professional foul, the defensive advantage is attained. Most importantly, the inability of one referee to cover one+ acres of land results in many fouls being unseen and the defense is advantaged. 
 
Those of us in AYSO who have each refereed over 1,000 games and with many additional games at the high school, college and professional level, are experienced by the usage of different referee systems. Costs of reffing in high school has resulted in the Two Ref system and not only reduced the cost of reffing (in comparison to the One Ref and Two linesman system)  but have advantaged the offense by not allowing defensive fouls to go unseen and thereby reducing the players plan of implementing more professional fouls to the advantage of defensive soccer.
 
It is quite obvious to this referee that the FIFA mandated One Ref system is locked into the International game, we Americans are desirous of increasuing the number of goals at all levels and with a greater fairness. In 1969, the Watts Riots (Los Angeles) resulted in the Los Angeles Jr Chamber of Commerce conducting the Watts Summer Games to reduce the tension between the high school athletes of the inner City and the high school athletes of the suburban Cities. Soccer was one of the sports.   As chief refereee, a three page document "Three Refs On the Field" (TROF) describing the reffing mechanics (primarily the location of each ref to the location of the ball in play) was prepared and implemented during the tournament. Each player, knowing that there was a ref in front, along side, and behind him, minimized his fouls because he knew he would be called, and as a result, committed less fouls and goals increased for both sides.
 
Now, to encourage FIFA, Paul Harris, Larry Harris, and Joe Bonchonsky demonstrated the TROF reffing system in a professional game, a high school game, and a youth game to Ken Aston, the FIFA International Referee Instructor from England. The results were more than he anticipated and his comments noted the improved fluidity of each game and the goodly number of goals scored. 
 
The TROF System of Soccer Merchanics is detailed herein in the AYSO National Philosophies. Not only is the TROF Ref System advanatageous to the game of soccer via the improved  offensive game but AYSO also uses TROF to train referees on the field with two additional refs but also to minimize the inabilities of a learning ref who, otherwise, would be by himself (destroying the game and the coaches training) during the early part of the referee's learning career.   The TROF System also extends the active life of aging referees thereby bringing more experience to officiating.
 
It is acknowledged that FIFA will support the One Ref System until "fairness" (Maradonna, Thiery, etc., and their World Cup obvious fouls are called) becomes a primary goal in the game of soccer.  As Americans, loving the sport of soccer, and seeking justice from our referees, we do not blame our present referees for the "bad officiated" games but instead find fault with the reffing system. When you "call" all intentional fouls, you will call" less fouls, and more goals will be scored.  
 
 
 
 
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