Greensboro United Soccer Association

GUSA Code of Conduct

Greensboro United Code of Conduct

GUSA Parent Conduct at Games:

Soccer games are as exciting for some parents as they are for their kids.  That is great!  For many of the spectators however, soccer is a sport about which they frequently don’t know all of the rules.  They want to support the team, cheer for the team and encourage their child.  Occasionally this enthusiasm combines with a parent’s lack of familiarity with the game, or lack of knowledge of the coach’s instruction to the team in a way which causes problems.  We do not wish to curb your enthusiasm for the game.  We do wish to make sure that your enthusiasm is channeled in a way which will be helpful, complies with the rules of the game and is consistent with the coach’s instruction to the team.  In this spirit, please keep these suggestions in mind as you attend GUSA games:

1.         DO NOT YELL AT THE REFEREE——It is our goal to build not only good soccer players, but good sportsmanship in all of the players.  Your positive, or negative example will either greatly reinforce or significantly undermine that effort.  The coach or team captain has principle responsibility, although with very limited latitude, in speaking with the referee.  Let them do their job when and if, they feel it is necessary.  And finally, with respect to tournament play, oftentimes one tournament team is given a special award for good sportsmanship.  Your yelling and screaming at a game can do much to rob the kids of an opportunity to earn such an award. 

2.         SEEK TO BETTER UNDERSTAND THE RULES OF THE GAME——Sometimes a parent or spectators frustration with a referee is based upon a limited knowledge of some of the rules of the game.  Many times the differences of opinion are related to different interpretations of the rules.  All the laws of the game are easily accessible on the internet by searching, “FIFA Laws of the Game”.  Spending a short amount of time reading the rules of the game will help you become a better informed fan and can result in a much more fun weekend watching soccer!

3.         ENCOURAGE—DO NOT CRITICIZE——One of our goals is to help your son or daughter play good soccer.  No less important is our goal to make every effort to ensure that your son or daughter has fun.  Your child understands the club’s high expectations for them and feels peer pressure to do well.  You can best help by confining your talk during games to be positive encouragement. 

If possible, be quietly enthusiastic and supportive.  However, for those of you whose participation in and familiarity with other sports(football, basketball, baseball and so on) have ingrained in you an irresistible need to yell and scream during a sporting event, then we make the following suggestions.

Official List of Approved Cheers

*   “Win the ball”  The team that is aggressive in gaining and keeping possession of the ball usually wins.

*  “Let’s go GUSA”  A good general purpose yell for all parents who feel compelled to yell something.  It fits almost every occasion.

*  “Nice pass(or shot, or throw in, or tackle, or save and so on)  A nice short yell for a parent concerned that if too much is said, ignorance of the game may be revealed.

*  “Keep working GUSA”  Another good all purpose yell. 

Official List of Prohibited Cheers

 *   Any sentence or phrase which starts or ends with the word “referee” or “linesman”.  For example, “Are you blind referee?” or “She’s offsides Mr. linesman, get in the game”.

*  “Kick it hard”  Possession of the ball is a primary goal in soccer.  We are not playing kickball.  We try to teach the kids to pass the ball to teammates or to open space where teammates can win the ball.  At times because of defensive pressure or the proximity of the ball to our goal, we coach them to clear the ball long.  However, unbridled encouragement of the kids to “kick it hard” can often times be confusing. 

*  “Go get the ball!”  Be careful with this one.  Winning the loose ball is important, but we do not want to play bunch ball, where all the players run all over the field chasing the ball in a pack.  maintaining space, trusting your teammates to do their jobs, maintaining positions of support and attack are important.

*  Any negative comment directed at any player, especially your own child.  This is the rule that separates the All Star parents from the also fans.  When the votes are counted, into which group will you fall?

All Star Players Deserve All Star Parents

A few years ago, Dr. Rob Gilbert wrote an article in the National Soccer Coaches Association of America Journal on how to be an all star parent.  As your children move towards more competitive soccer, take a minute to consider Dr. Gilbert’s Three B’s for All Star Parenting:

            1.  Be There——You can never hope to be an all star parent unless you show up at games.  Regardless of the skill level of your child or the success of the team, go to the games.  Be supportive.  Don’t be a fickle or fair weather fan.

            2.  Be Positive——When your child puts on their GUSA uniform, stop being a parent and become a fan!  There is no trick to learn here.  You already know what to do.  Remember who you behaved when your child was learning how to walk?  You were a fan and a supporter, weren’t you?  You applauded the “downs” as well as the “ups”. You never said things like, “Why are you moving so slowly?”  or “How come the kid next doors walking better than you?” or “Why do you keep making the same mistakes?”  Why should it be any different now that your child is an athlete?  Your job is not to be the coach or the expert.  Be the fan.  On the sidelines, if you can’t say something positive, don’t say anything at all. 

            3.  Be Seated——Even though it is good to be positive, it’s not good to overdo it.  Don’t stick out.  Be an admirer, not a cheerleader.  Players should not confuse your voice wight the public address system. 

Once you start to become a positive, acknowledging fan, an interesting this will happen.  Your child will want you at the games.  You will know that you are considered an important member of your son or daughters personal all star support team. 

Respect the 24 Hour Rule:

We all have much invested in the game of soccer and the kids that participate in GUSA.  This inevitably leads to emotions running high at times for players, parents and coaches alike.  It is very rare that conversations during these emotional times are as productive as anyone would like.  For this reason we ask that if you have concerns or questions for your coach that you wait 24 hours after the completion of any game to approach or contact the coach.  This 24 hour time period generally allows emotions to abate and leads to a more productive conversation with the ultimate goal being to get everyone on the same page moving forward. 

By the same token you should expect any phone call or email sent to the coach or DOC to be returned within 24 hours.  Please contact your DOC or DOS if this does not occur.


Lines of Communication:

Should you have a question or concern at anytime we have very specific lines of communication that we ask you to follow.  Please address questions or concerns in the following order:

1.         Your coach

2.         Your appropriate Director of Coaching

3.         Director of Soccer

4.         Executive Director

There are many reasons why we ask that you follow these lines of communication.  Generally the coach will have the most specific knowledge about your team and should be the best and fastest was to have any concerns addressed.  In addition, this allows our coaches to continually improve at begin able to deal with issues and concerns, which will ultimately make them a better coach moving forward.  If you skip this step and contact the DOC you will be asked to contact the coach first unless it is an extreme circumstance.  The next contact would be with the appropriate DOC, followed by the DOS and then if your concerns have still not been met and addressed, then the Executive Director would be the contact.  

Contact Us


118 S Cherry St, STE B
Kernersville, North Carolina 27284

Phone : 336-993-2137
Copyright © 2020 Greensboro United Soccer Association  |  Privacy Statement |  Terms Of Use |  License Agreement |  Children's Privacy Policy  Login