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Getting Started with Soccer

Are you interested in registering yourself or your child to play soccer in Georgia, but don't know where to start? You have come to the right place. This page will lay out all the information you need to register and play.


Find a Club

The first step is to find a club or league in your area. You can do this by using our online Club Finder. You can search by ZIP Code and desired distance from home, or browse the interactive map. We recommend selecting two or three clubs in your area to look at a bit closer. You can click on "Club Info" for any club and see its contact information and website. Club websites will offer complete details on the programs they offer.


Types of Programs

  • Recreational: Recreational programs are for youth players and are geared towards players who want to play "just for fun." Teams are not selected using tryouts and players are never "cut." Teams may be formed randomly or geographically by where players live.

  • Academy: Academy programs are competitive select soccer programs designed for younger players. Academy programs are for the 9U, 10U, 11U, and 12U age groups, though there may be "pre-Academy" programs for players as young as 8U. Teams are formed using tryouts, though the primary objective of these programs is player development.

  • Athena/Classic: These programs are for the competitive player in age groups 13U to 19U. These teams are formed by tryouts, players are cut, and the focus is split between development and competition.

  • Adult Soccer: These programs are for players over the age of 19. These leagues may be further defined by age and no youth age players will be allowed.


Age Groups

For youth players, the age group within which a player participates is dictated by their birthdate. Please see the chart below to find out into which age group your youth player will fall. Please note that there are different cutoff dates for recreational and competitive programs.

The below dates are for the 19-20 seasonal year.



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Athena, Classic and Academy

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Participating in youth soccer does not require a substantial investment in equipment. All youth players are required to wear shinguards, long soccer socks and closed toe athletic shoes or cleats. Jerseys are issued by the club, sometimes for a fee. Recreational teams typically only have one jersey, while competitive select teams may require several full kits and warm-up gear. Your club will provide all uniform information to you when you register.


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