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Team Handbook & League Rules


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Team Handbook – 2023-2024 Season

A US Club Soccer Sanctioned League



The goal of this handbook is to provide assistance to clubs, coaches and managers to

ensure the Carolina Champions League operates smoothly and is a positive experience

for all involved – players, coaches, managers, club officials, referees, and parents.

When competing in Carolina Champions League Programs, the club is responsible for

overseeing their coaches, players, parents and club personnel – administratively, on and

around the field. Each club is responsible for ensuring all club members understand and

meet the following requirements and follow Carolina Champions League Rules and

Code of Ethics.


Quality – Clubs and their teams must be committed to striving for excellence with

respect to play, sportsmanship, fields, referees, and the total soccer experience.


Director of Coaching – Clubs must have a named Director of Coaching listed on the

Carolina Champions League contacts page with a working email address. The Director must

be familiar with each team in their club and the team’s involvement in the Carolina

Champions League Programs.

Administrator – Clubs must have an administrator responsible for helping teams

maintain their club and team information on the Carolina Champions League website.

 This person should have a working email address and be available to assist team

managers with all administrative tasks.


Good Standing – Clubs must be in good standing with the Carolina Champions




Table of Contents


Mission Statement & Core Values 5

Carolina Champions League General Rule & Regulations

Admin/ Management 6

Scheduling/ Communication 8

Game Officials 9

League Discipline 9

Equipment 10

Carolina Champions League General Rule & Regulations

Competition Rules 13

Rosters 17

Game Day Procedures 18









Vision - Grow the game through collaboration.


Mission - A positive culture among local clubs that allows an

inclusive platform to develop and create their own identity!


Core Values


? Collaboration

o Supporting clubs to work together

? Relationships

o Growing the game together

? Courage

o Confidence to create change

? Education

o Developing the best coaches, to create the best players

? Action

o Staying relevant and ahead of the trends

? Competition

o Healthy competition - ” its essential for development”




Carolina Champions League General Rules and Regulations


Applies to all Carolina Champions League hosted games.


Section 1: Administration/ Management

1.1 – Carolina Champions League

The Carolina Champions League, is a US Club Soccer sanctioned league and member of the

United States Soccer Federation.

1.2 – Governance

All Carolina Champions League competitions are governed by regulations approved by the

League Office and written in this handbook. The League Office shall rule on all disputes and

issues pertaining to Carolina Champions League competitions that are not covered in the Code of

Ethics. The League Office may overrule rules in this handbook if it is determined to be for the

good of the game.

1.3 – Club Definition

In order for a club to be considered a member of the Carolina Champions League, the following

conditions must be satisfied:


1. All teams participating in Carolina Champions League events must belong to a single

legal entity, with a single leadership structure, single financial structure and a single

governance structure.

2. All teams participating in Carolina Champions League events must have a common Club

name, logo and uniform.

3. All teams participating in Carolina Champions League events must operate under a single

technical structure/ plan and report to a single Technical Director, Director of Coaching

or Executive Director.

4. All players participating in Carolina Champions League events must be registered under

a  US Club ID.



1.4 - Club Pass Rule

Each US Club Soccer player pass can be used for any age-appropriate team in the issuing club.

 Thus, players have the ability to move up and down within their club, giving individual teams

the ability to make changes game to game due to illness, injury, vacation or other conflicts. It is

considered unethical for teams to move players down within a club for the purpose of creating a

competitive advantage.


1.5 - Team Management

Overall, clubs are responsible for the management of their teams. In order to compete in Carolina

Champions League events, each team must have a team administrator who oversees the following

responsibilities: referee payments, travel cooperation and communication with appropriate

league officials. All team administrators must have access to email that is checked on a daily basis

and a telephone number connected to a 24-hour answering system during the season.


1.6 - Division Formations

Competitive divisions will be structured according to the playing level of teams as determined by

the Carolina Champions League Office, which has final authority on all placement issues.

Should the Carolina Champions League determine there is an insufficient number of teams to

constitute an age group division, the teams affected may be allowed to temporarily or partially

compete in a different division of play.


1.7 - League Standings

Official standings of teams, the keeping of which is the responsibility of the League Office.


1.8 – Play Up Request Guidelines

For teams who wish to request to play up an age group, the Carolina Champions League Office

will use the following criteria to determine if a team needs to play up for their development:


1. Team has proven in previous seasons to be a very dominant team within their own age

group, OR

2. Team does not have appropriate competition locally and needs to travel significantly in

order to find competition within their own age group

Play up requests must be submitted to the League Office. The Carolina Champions League

Office has final say on all Play Up decisions.

Section 2: Scheduling and Communication


2.1 – Required Club Contacts

Each club needs to be kept up to date with the proper contact information. Please keep in mind

that this is the primary method by which Carolina Champions League communicates with your

club. Failing to have the proper contact information may result in your club missing vital league

communication. Each club shall maintain the following club contacts:

? DOC - mandatory

? President - optional

? Administrator  - mandatory


2.2 - Communication Policy

Communication between teams is vitally important for all Carolina Champions League events.

Each team must have at least 2 different contacts listed on the Carolina Champions League Club

Contact page and ensure that both contacts have an email and phone number listed. Team

contacts must respond to communication within 48 hours. Listing the wrong email or phone

number will not be a valid excuse for not responding to communication.


2.3 - Policy for Scheduling Matches

The Carolina Champions League Office will provide dates for all matches along with

scheduling deadlines. Teams are expected to be available to play any time on the game dates

available you provided. After the deadline passes, the schedules are locked and games cannot be rescheduled.

 Teams unwilling or unable to attend games will forfeit the game. Any unplayed games will be

documented by league officials and may result in a club being removed from Carolina

Champions League.


2.4 – Re-Scheduling Games

Once a game has been agreed on in writing, both teams must agree on any scheduling change.

 After the scheduling deadline passes, a date must be set before any change is made to the

schedule. i.e. If a team would like to reschedule a game following the scheduling deadline, a

specific reschedule date must be set within the league dates of play, before the game can be changed.


2.5 - Cancellation/Forfeit Policy

Teams must give the league & opponent a 72-hour warning if forfeiting any match or they will be

required to pay referee costs. Please remember that this is a club competition and not

an individual team competition. The following is a list of common excuses teams cite for

wanting to reschedule or cancel a game. We recommend the following solutions to frequently

posed problems:


? Too many players missing (sick, testing, etc.) - Remember that any player from your club

is available to participate with your team as long as they are of correct age. In league

matches please use lower team players or players from younger teams within your club to

fill out your roster.


? Missing Coach - Any coach with a valid pass for your club is able to coach any team in

that club. If your coach has several commitments, then it is recommended that teams have

an assistant coach or another coach from the club available to cover games.


? No Fields Available - It is expected that if your team is playing in Carolina Champions

League, and if you are hosting games, you have access to quality fields. This excuse will not

be acceptable for cancellation of a match.


? Tournaments/other games - Carolina Champions League understands that teams will

possibly play in a tournament during the league. This will not be an acceptable excuse to ask

to reschedule a game if given after the Carolina Champions League scheduling deadlines. Please plan your schedule well in advance so your schedule does not become so full that you are unable to fulfill your league commitment.

Section 3: Game Officials

3.1 - Match Officials

Match officials must be current year USSF licensed referees. The match officials shall consist of

the referee and two assistant referees except 7v7/ 9v9 formats of play may be played with one

referee. Clubs may elect to use club linesmen for 7v7/ 9v9 formats of play. No match officials,

other than club linesmen, may have family members in the game they are working. Club

linesmen may only signal when the ball has left the field of play, they may not call off-sides or



3.2 - Assignment of Match Officials

Match officials shall be assigned by the Referee Assignor working on behalf of the Carolina Champions League and paid by the teams for each match.


Section 4: League Discipline

4.1 - Violating League Rules

The Carolina Champions League and the Carolina Champions League Office

shall have the authority to suspend, fine, disqualify or otherwise impose sanctions on, players,

team officials or competing clubs for violating league rules, the Carolina Champions League

Code of Ethics or for any action or conduct not in the best interest of soccer or the Carolina

Champions League.


4.2 - Disciplinary Issues

Any breach of Carolina Champions League Rules outlined in this Handbook should be reported

to the appropriate Event Coordinator, who will then refer it to the League Office. Any incidents

or breach of the Carolina Champions League Code of Ethics should be reported immediately. All reports of rule violations or breaches of the Carolina Champions League Code of Ethics may only be reported by a club’s DOC or President.




4.3 - Red Cards

If a Red Card is shown, it will result in a minimum of a one (1) game suspension. This includes a

Red Card as the result of two cautions. If a player is sent off during the weekend, they may not

play the remainder of the weekend, regardless of which event the Red Card is issued in. Games

sat out that weekend will count against the suspension, as long as noted on the game card and/or

Referee Game Report as such. Any player used during a suspension will be considered an illegal

player and the team, coach and club will be punished accordingly.


4.4 - Red Card Procedure

In any game where a Red Card is issued, the referee must notify the Carolina Champions League

League Office within 24 hours. The player card can be returned to the team as long as the

Referee Send Off Report shows the infraction, the player’s name and ID number.


4.5 - Suspensions

It is the team’s and/or club’s responsibility to ensure their Red Carded player/coach serves the

minimum 1 game suspension. It is also their responsibility to ensure that their player/coach

serves any additional suspension determined by the Carolina Champions League PAD

committee. There shall be two types of suspensions:

1. Minor Offenses – These include send offs for normal soccer actions, 2nd yellow cards, etc.

 Minor offenses will be given suspensions for a number of games within the competition

that the red card was received in.

2. Major Offenses – These include send offs for violent actions. Major offenses will incur

suspensions for an amount of time and will rule players or coaches out across all Carolina

Champions League competitions.

The only exception is that a suspension may be postponed – at the discretion of the Carolina

Champions League League Office – if it would prevent the player from playing in additional




Section 5: Equipment

5.1 - Safety

A player must not use equipment or wear anything which is dangerous to themselves or another

player (including all jewelry).

5.2 - Casts

No orthopedic (hard) casts, air splints or metal splints may be worn. Players will be allowed to

play in a soft cast at the discretion of the Referee.


5.3 - Jewelry

Absolutely no jewelry, including rings, chains, watches, jewelry, hair clips, bobby pins, earrings,

bracelets, rubber bracelets, or abnormally long fingernails may be worn while participating in

any Carolina Champions League games. Only Medical Alert Warning Bracelets may be worn,

and shall be taped to secure them to the player's body. Earrings and other piercings cannot be

taped, and must be removed.

5.4 - Shin guards

All players are required to use shin guards at all times. They must be worn properly and be

professionally manufactured and unaltered. Socks must completely cover shin guards.

5.5 - Braces

It is strongly recommended for the safety of the player, that a player does not wear a brace

during Carolina Champions League games. Braces are allowed as long as the referee decides that

the brace will not or cannot hurt the player wearing the brace or any other player. All metal,

metal-like, or plastic brace supports are to be properly covered for the duration of the match.

Elastic-type supports without any metal, carbon fiber, hard plastic or like devices are permitted

provided the referee does not deem the support to be potentially harmful to other players.

5.6 - Eyeglasses

Players who must wear eyeglasses are encouraged to wear sports goggles. Lenses must be

unbreakable and frames must be unbreakable plastic or sturdy metal.

5.7 – Player Uniforms

The two teams must wear colors that distinguish them from each other and also the referee and

the assistant referees. It is recommended that the home team (team listed first) wear dark

uniforms while the away team (team listed second) wears light uniforms. Each goalkeeper must

wear colors that distinguish them from the other players, the referee, and the assistant referees.

 All players on a team except the goalkeeper shall wear identical uniforms (shirts, shorts, and


If there is a conflict in uniform color, the home team shall change uniforms.

5.8 - Player Numbers

Player numbers must be affixed to the back of the uniform shirt. Each player within a team shall

wear a unique number that matches the shirt number issued on their player card.

5.9 – Undergarments

If undershirts or shorts are worn they should match the main color of the jersey or short. If tape, or

other material is applied externally to the socks it must be the same color as the part of the sock

to which it is applied.

5.10 - Home Team

The home team is the team listed first on the official schedule. The home team will furnish the

game balls.


5.13 - Technical Area

Both team benches to be on the same side of the field.


Carolina Champions League Rules and Regulations


Section 1: Competition Rules

1.1 - Playing Rules

All games under league jurisdiction shall be played according to the rules and regulations

recognized by the Carolina Champions League which shall be the same rules set by FIFA/ U.S.

Soccer (USSF) except for those exceptions authorized by FIFA or USSF.

1.2 - Point System

All Carolina Champions Leagues shall operate under a point system. The point system shall

award three points for a win, one point for a tie and no points for a loss.

1.3 - Tie Breakers

In case of a tie in the standings within a league, the following will be used as tiebreakers:

1. “Head to head” points (win/lose/draw) between teams

2. “Head to head” Goal Differential between teams

3. Overall Goal Differential (up to 4)

4. Goals for (up to 4)

5. Goals against (up to 4)

6. Most points against highest non-tied team in group

7. Best goal differential against highest non-tied team in group

8. Most shutouts

9. Least red cards

10. Coin toss

1.4 - Game Details


The playing field used by each team must be lined according to USSF standards with goals

(games can be played as long as both goals are the same size), nets and flags. The goal of each

club shall be to provide an enjoyable experience for the fans, players, officials and everyone

involved with the staging of a soccer game.

In all small sided formats ( 7v7 and 9v9), the use of cones is permitted for the formation of

the field lines if needed.

1.6 – Heading Game Rule

For U12 and below, when a player deliberately heads the ball in a game, an indirect free kick

should be awarded to the opposing team from the spot of the offense. If the deliberate header

occurs within the goal area, the indirect free kick should be taken on the goal area line parallel to

the goal line at the point nearest to where the infringement occurred. If a player does not

deliberately head the ball, then play should continue.

This rule shall apply to the age groups of U12 and below. Players who are playing up will play

according to the rules of the age group in which they are playing. It is the club’s responsibility

to understand the effects of this rule on players playing up.

1.65  Goalkeepers may not PUNT or DROP KICK the ball during 7v7 & 9v9 games.

1.7 – No Re-Entry Protocol (for Head Injury)

In accordance with the US Soccer return to play guidelines, any player removed from the field

for a suspected head injury will not be allowed to return to the field of play unless cleared by a

Healthcare Professional.

1.8 – Healthcare Professional

A healthcare professional is defined as “a licensed healthcare professional such as an athletic

trainer certified (ATC), or a physician (MD/DO), with a skill set in emergency care and sports

medicine injuries and with knowledge and experience related to concussion evaluation and

management.” It will be up to each club to decide whether they will provide a healthcare

professional at their matches, and to ensure that this individual has the correct certification to be

evaluating players for head trauma. If a club plans to use a healthcare professional to evaluate

suspected head injuries during a Carolina Champions League match, the healthcare professional

must be presented to the referee prior to the start of the match. Referees will not allow the

re-entry of players removed from the field of play for suspected head injuries unless they are

informed of the presence of, and meet with, a healthcare professional prior to the start of the


1.9 - Substitutions

As per FIFA guidelines, unlimited substitutions are allowed in all ages group. However, teams

may substitute only with the referee’s permission. Substitutes must wait on the sideline (off of

the field of play) until the field player has left the field of play and/or the referee has indicated

the substitute may enter the field of play.

Substitutions by either team are allowed at any stoppage of play with the permission of the

referee. Referees will be instructed not to allow substitutions that are deemed “excessive” or of a


“time wasting” nature. Please be respectful of the integrity of the game and do not use the free

substitution rules as a means to disrupt the match.


1.10 – Ties in League Play

If a league game is tied after regulation, the tie stands and will be posted as a tie.

1.11 - Playoffs for League

For matches that need a winner, the team with the most goals after regulation time will be the

winner. If the match is tied after regulation for U9-U19 teams, two five minute periods will be

played. Teams will have a 5-minute break before the first overtime. After 5 minutes, teams will

change sides, with no break, and play the remaining 5 minutes. If the game is still tied after the

two overtime periods, then kicks from the mark per FIFA will determine the winner.

Please make sure you arrive for your game knowing if the game can end in a draw or if a

winning team is required.

1.12 - Incomplete games

In the event that a game cannot be completed, the game will stand if half or more of the game

was played; provided, however that if any team is directly responsible for the termination of the

game, no matter how much of the match remains, due to poor sportsmanship towards a referee,

opposing fans, or opposing players, the team will be required to forfeit the match. This could

also lead to other sanctions set forth by the Carolina Champions League Office. If there is no result, and the match is suspended prior to the

expiration of one half, the game shall be replayed at a time agreed upon by the competing teams

in consultation with the Carolina Champions League Office. Referees are required to submit an

incident report for all matches that are ended early.

1.13 - No-Shows

A no-show occurs when a team willfully does not show up to a game agreed to by the teams.

 The penalty for a no-show shall be a forfeit to the opposing team with a 0-3 score as well as a

$500 fine imposed on the club. One no-show may result in the offending team being terminated

from the league. Two no-shows in a single season may result in the offending club’s

termination from the league.

1.14 - Forfeits

A forfeit occurs when a team is unable to attend a scheduled game and the teams are unable to

come to terms on a time to reschedule (after the scheduling deadline has passed). A forfeit will

result in a 3-0 win to the team not at fault. The forfeiting club will be fined $500 to cover all

referee and field costs if they inform the opponent less than 72 hours before the scheduled game

time. A team unable to attend a scheduled game because of an accident, or act of god (weather,

etc) should immediately notify the opponent and the League Office. In these circumstances, the

League Office will review and rule on the situation.


1.15 - Protests

Protests regarding the match conditions (i.e. field condition, etc.) must be made prior to the start

of the match and be clearly written on the official game card. Protests regarding the use of

illegal players may be made prior to or following the match and be clearly written on the game

card. Specific referee decisions cannot be protested. No match condition protests will be allowed

at Carolina Champions League hosted events. All protested games should be sent to the

appropriate event coordinator, who will forward to the League Office for a ruling.

1.16 – Fines

The Carolina Champions League Office may impose the following fines:

? Team drops out of the league after final brackets are posted: $750

? Team drops out of the league after 1st game is played: $200 per game missed

? No-show/ Forfeit within 72 hours to a scheduled game: $500

No Show to League Directors Meeting: $500

Non Compliance of Uniform policy: $100 per occurrence.


Section 2: Rosters

2.1 - Player Registration

Players shall be registered according to US Club Soccer rules.

2.2 - Game Roster

Each team must create an official US Club roster. No matter how many players are listed on a

team’s roster, only 18 players for U13 and up, 15 players for U11-U12 and 14 players for

U9-U10 may be used for Carolina Champions League matches.

Each roster will be locked after a specific date determined by the Carolina Champions

League office. Rosters & Player Cards will be checked by referees before a  game has taken


2.3 - US Club Soccer Player Pass

All players and coaches must present their US Club Soccer player pass to the referee prior to the

match. If the individual picture is not on the ID card and the card is not laminated, the individual

will not be eligible for the match.

2.4 - Forgotten US Club Player Credentials

If a team forgets their US Club player passes for a Carolina Champions League game, the game

should be played under protest. Any players that wish to play must have a picture taken prior to

the game and submitted to the League Office to verify that the players were eligible to

participate. If this is a continuous issue with a team or club, the League Office may remove that

team from the league.In emergencies, an Electronic Copy of Roster/Player Card will suffice.

2.5 - Guest Players

No guest players are allowed in the Carolina Champions League.

2.6 - Illegal Players


Any player who does not appear on the official US Club roster or have a valid US Club Soccer

Player Pass issued by the same club at the time of the match shall be considered an illegal player.

 Any team using, or attempting to use, an illegal player shall forfeit the game, the coach of the

team using the illegal player will be suspended from all Carolina Champions League

competitions for one year, and the Club of the illegal player will incur a $500 fine.

Section 3: Game Day Procedures

3.1 - Game Day Procedures

Each manager should have the following at every game

? US Club Medical Release forms

? US Club Soccer roster of team

? US Club Soccer passes for its players and team officials

? Provide and pay current year licensed USSF referees

3.3 - Post-Game Procedure

Home team Responsibilities:

? Coach or manager sign the Game Card following the game

? If a red card is given, see red card procedure above – this requires immediate action from

the center referee and manager

Visiting team responsibilities:

? Coach or manager must sign the Game Card following the game

3.4 - Personnel on the bench

A maximum of 3 team officials are allowed in each team’s technical area. Team officials must

have a US Club pass visible at all times in order to sit in the technical area. It is highly recommended that teams have several credentialed coaches or managers with passes for the team just in case something happens to the head coach.

 A US Club pass makes a person eligible to coach any team in the club for which that coach or manager is credentialed.

3.5 – Score reports

The referee will collect the Game Card and deliver to the Carolina Champions League HQ


3.6 – Game Cards

Following the match, the Officials and each coach need to sign the Game Card. The referee

will collect the Game Card and deliver to the Carolina Champions League HQ tent.

3.7 – Jersey Conflict

If there is a conflict in jersey colors, it is the home team’s responsibility to change colors. The

Carolina Champions League designates home teams to wear their dark colors, while away teams

wear light colors.

CCLNC Code of Ethics



Code of Ethics and Guidelines 


A US Club Soccer Sanctioned League 



Entering any Carolina Champions League (“CCLNC”) or other CCLNC competition is 

considered to be an automatic acceptance of the CCL’s rules, policies and procedures including 

this Ethics Code and Guidelines. 

In addition, all teams within a CCLNC Member Club will be held to the standards set forth 

in this Code of Ethics and Guidelines, regardless of which specific competition they play in. 

CCLNC’s purpose is to set the highest standards for soccer clubs to develop youth players to their 

fullest potential – physically, emotionally, and ethically. As such, participants must conduct 

themselves to the highest standard. At all times, adult participants are expected to be role 

models for the youth involved in this league - exhibiting good sporting behavior in both victory 

and defeat. 

All participants in CCLNC events are members of US Club Soccer and therefore must adhere 

faithfully, both to the letter and the spirit, to its stated bylaws, rules and policies, as well as the 

CCLNC Handbooks and the guidelines for new club admittance. In addition to those stated bylaws, 

rules and policies the following encompasses the CCLNC Ethics Policy: 

Section 1 - Definitions 


As used herein, the following terms shall have the following definitions: 


Adult Member: Any Coach, Director of Coaching, Trainer, Manager, Official or other 

individual 18 years of age or older affiliated with a Club and having access to a Player, the 

Player’s parents or the Player’s contact information that is not available publicly. 

Certified Referee Assignor: Any individual certified by the United States Soccer Federation 

to serve as a referee assignor. 


Club: Any club or academy admitted to CCLNC or that is a member of US Club Soccer. 

Coach: Any coach, assistant coach, or trainer employed by or volunteering for a Club. 

Director of Coaching: Any individual employed by or volunteering for a Club as a Director of 

Coaching, Executive Director, Technical Director, General Manager or as an assistant to any of 

the above listed roles and all Adult Members filling similar roles regardless of title. 

Field: Any field used by a club to conduct Tryouts, Training Sessions or Games (other than 

tournament games). 


Game: Any CCLNC sanctioned game, including all league, play date and State Cup games. For 

purposes of this Code of Ethics, tournament games sanctioned only by US Club Soccer, NCYSA 

or USYS are not deemed Games. 


Manager: Any individual employed or volunteering to serve as a team manager, team parent or 

similar role regardless of title. 


Official: Any individual serving as a Coach, Director of Coaching, Referee, board member, 

director or similar role for a Club. 


Player: Any player holding a valid player pass from US Club Soccer and currently playing for an 

CCLNC or US Club Soccer Club. 



Recruiting: Contact or communication with a Player who is registered to another CCLNC Club 

and asking or allowing them to attend a tryout outside of the Carolina Champions League Tryout 

Window, attend a Training Session, or play or guest play for any other Team, without first 

receiving written permission from the Director of Coaching of the Player’s then current Club. 


Referee: Any referee licensed for the then current year by the United States Soccer Federation. 


Trainer: Any adult employed by or volunteering for a Club as a trainer regardless of title. An 

individual will also be deemed a Trainer if they are privately training Players who play for 

another Club. 


Training Session: Any Club sanctioned, or private, training session or practice. Training 

Sessions are limited to Players carded to play for the Club holding the Training Session. 


Tryouts: Any Club advertised try-out session, including regularly scheduled tryouts and 

supplemental tryouts. Tryouts are open to all Players and all youth who are not Players but are 

interested in becoming Players. 


Section 2 - Basic Rules 


1. No Adult Member will have in his/ her possession, or consume alcoholic beverages or illegal 

drugs while attending an event sanctioned or sponsored by CCLNC. 


2. All adults, including Adult Members, attending an event sponsored or sanctioned by CCLNC will 

exhibit and demonstrate good sportsmanship at all times, including, refraining from coaching 

from the sidelines, harassing Referees, Coaches or Players or behaving in a manner disruptive to 

the enjoyment of any other spectator. 


3. Adult Members shall not attempt to entice a team or player to leave a Club to come to another 



Section 3 – Clubs 


1. No Club will hire an Adult Member from another Club and within one (1) year allow this 

individual to work with any players he or she coached in his/her previous Club in the previous 

year without the written permission of their former Club. A Club’s lack of knowledge regarding 

an Adult Member’s previous association with another Club is not an excuse from sanction for 

violating this provision. Not withstanding the forgoing, serving as a Director of Coaching, Age 

Group Coordinator or other similar role shall not constitute coaching for the purpose of this 



2. All Clubs will have a Certified Referee Assignor for games not scheduled by the CCLNC. 


3. In accordance with US Club Soccer policy, Clubs will release Players who request their release 

from the Club. 


4. Clubs will not accept any Player from any other Club if that Player has outstanding fees with 

another Club. Unpaid fees shall include fees for services already rendered and shall not include 

by way of illustration, fees for services not rendered, reimbursement for scholarships given or 




5. Clubs are responsible for the conduct of their parents and any spectators on the sidelines of 

any CCLNC games. 


Section 4 - Code of Ethics 


Purpose: This code of ethics has been developed to clarify and distinguish approved and 

accepted professional, ethical and moral behavior from that which is detrimental to the 

development of soccer within the CCLNC and US Club Soccer. This Code of Ethics is applicable to 

all Adult Members and Players though in many cases the Coach will be primarily responsible for 

insuring compliance. Punishments for violations of this code of ethics may be imposed upon a 

Club if committed by an Adult Member or other individual present at a Game or Training 


Responsibilities to Players 

1. The Adult Member shall never place the value of winning over the safety and welfare of 


2. Adult Members shall instruct players to play within the laws of the game and within the spirit 

of the game at all times. 

3. Adult Members shall not seek unfair advantage by teaching or encouraging deliberate 

unsportsmanlike behavior to players. 

4. Adult Members should not tolerate inappropriate or unsportsmanlike behavior at Games or 

Training Sessions from players or adults regardless of the situation. 

5. The demands Adult Members place on Players time should never be so extensive as to 

interfere with academic goals or progress. 

6. Adult Members must never encourage Players or other adults to violate CCLNC recruitment, 

eligibility or other rules and policies. 

7. Adult Members should direct Players to seek proper medical attention for injuries and to 

follow the physicians instructions regarding treatment and recovery. 

8. Adult Members should take an active role in educating their Players about sports nutrition, 

fitness and about prevention of tobacco use. 

9. Adult Members should educate themselves on a constant basis in order to provide their 

Players with the highest-level instruction possible. 

10. Adult Members should always place the Player’s development first and place Team success 




Responsibility to CCLNC and Member Clubs 

1. All Adult Members will adhere at all times to all CCLNC, United States Soccer Federation and US 

Club Soccer rules and policies. In particular Adult Members must follow all rules and policies 

regarding eligibility, team formation and Recruiting as those rules are mandatory and should 

never be violated. It is the responsibility of each Adult Member to know and understand these 


2. Any issues between Clubs should be addressed between the Clubs first. If the issue cannot be 

resolved between the Clubs, the involved Clubs should refer the issue to the CCLNC Commisioner. 


Responsibilities to the Laws of the Game 


1. Adult Members should be thoroughly acquainted with and demonstrate a working knowledge 

of the Laws of the Game. 

2. Adult Members are responsible to assure their Players understand the intent as well as the 

application of the Laws of the Game. 

3. Adult Members must adhere to the letter and spirit of the Laws of the Game. 

4. Adult Members are responsible for their players actions on the field and must not permit 

them to perform with intent of causing injury to opposing players. 

5. Adult Members must constantly strive to teach good sporting behavior. 


Responsibility to Referees 

1. Referees must have the support of Adult Members, Players and spectators. Adult Members 

must always refrain from criticizing Referees in the presence of Players or spectators. 


2. Professional respect, before, during and after the Game, should be mutual. There should be 

no demeaning or threatening dialogue or gestures between Referee, Adult Members or Players. 


3. Adult Members must not incite Players or spectators or attempt to disrupt the flow of any 



4. Comments regarding a Referee should be made in writing to the appropriate organization 

assigning the Referee. For purposes of making such comments, the comments should be 

directed in writing to the CCLNC Referee Coordinator and the Certified Referee Assignor for the 

Club hosting the Game leading to the comments. 


5. Referee game decisions (including yellow and red cards) may not be appealed to either the 

League Commissioner or the Appeals Committee. 



Responsibilities Regarding Scouting and Recruiting 


1. All CCLNC rules pertaining to Recruiting shall be strictly observed by all Adult Members as well 

as all official and unofficial team representatives. Unofficial team representatives include all 

parents of Players. 


2. It is inappropriate to Recruit Player(s) unless the Director of Coaching of the Player’s current 

Club provides written permission in advance of the initial approach to the Player. If a Player or 

parent of a Player initiates contact with any Adult Member of another club expressing intent to 

move to that Adult Member’s club, it is the responsibility of that Adult Member or the Adult 

Member’s Director of Coaching to inform the Director of Coaching of the Player’s current club. 


3. Inviting a Player to guest play without first submitting the proper US Club Guest Player Form 

shall be considered Recruiting. 


4. It is unethical for a Player to be recruited from any outside program including but not limited 

to PDP, ODP, High School or the US Soccer Training Center, either by a coach working for such 

program or any other Adult Member, Player, parent or Official present at said event. 


5. When discussing the advantages of his/her Club with a Player or a Player’s parent, the Adult 

Member has an obligation to be forthright and refrain from making derogatory remarks 

regarding other Adult Members, Teams and Clubs. 


6. It is unethical for any Adult Member to make a statement to a prospective Player which 

cannot be fulfilled; illegal to promise any kind of compensation or inducement for play; and 

immoral to deliver same. 


7. It is unethical for Adult Members to attend Tryouts for other Clubs for the purpose of 

promotion or recruitment, unless invited by the Club conducting the Tryout in writing, or to 

have Players attend Tryouts at other Clubs to Recruit Players from the Club conducting the 



8. It is unethical for a Team or groups of Players to be Recruited from one Club to another Club 

by an Adult Member working in the Team’s present Club, an Adult Member from another Club, 

or any Adult Member or representative from inside or outside the Club. 


Responsibility of Public Relations 

1. Adult Members have the responsibility to assist their Players in conducting themselves 

properly when in public and representing their team, their Club, US Club Soccer and/ or the 







Other Responsibilities 

1. An Adult Members behavior must be such as to bring credit to himself, or herself his or her 

Club and the sport of soccer. 

2. While the concept of rivalry is wholly embraced, it cannot take precedence over exemplary 

professional conduct. 

3. The attitude and conduct of the Adult Member towards Officials, Players, spectators and other 

Adult Members should be controlled and undemonstrative. 

4. It is unacceptable for an Adult Member to have any verbal altercation with an opposing Adult 

Member or Player before, during or after the Game. 

5. Adult Members must use their influence on his/her teams’ spectators to prevent intimidating 

and/or unacceptable behavior towards Officials including Referees, Player(s) and opposing team 



Section 5 - Referee Code of Ethics 


1. Referees will maintain the utmost respect for the game of soccer, conduct themselves 

honorably, and maintain the dignity of their position at all times. 

2. Referees will always honor an assignment or any other contractual obligation. 

3. Referees should educate themselves on a constant basis so as to know the Laws of the Game, 

their proper interpretation and their application. 

4. Referees will be loyal to their fellow Referees and never knowingly promote criticism of them. 

5. Referees will maintain good physical condition so they are capable of discharging their 

responsibilities on the field. 

6. Referees will control the Players and Coaches effectively by being courteous and considerate 

without sacrificing fairness. 

7. Referees will not make statements about any games except to clarify an interpretation of the 

Laws of the Game. 

8. Referees will communicate with players, coaches and spectators in a clear and professional 


9. Referees will arrive timely for all Games. 

10. Referees will have appropriate attire, including badges at all Games. 

11. Referees are not required to provide their name, badge number or other personal 

information to any Adult Member or Official other than as required on CCLNC game cards. 




Section 6 - Procedure for Filing and Appealing  


Before an issue or complaint is forwarded to the CCLNC Protest, Appeals, and Discipline 

Committee (“PAD Committee”), every attempt should be made to resolve the issue between the 

involved Clubs. If the issue cannot be resolved by the involved Clubs, the issue should be 

forwarded to the applicable Committee. If the issue involves two clubs from different regions or 

the issue is time sensitive it should be forwarded to the PAD Committee at 

 Only the Director of Coaching or President of the Board of Directors of the protesting Club may submit a Incident Report to the PAD Committee. 

 Reports forwarded by individuals other than the reporting Club’s Director of Coaching or the President 

of the reporting Club’s Board of Directors will be dismissed by the PAD Committee. 

All issues forwarded to the PAD Committee will be dealt with first by the PAD 

Committee, and if necessary, on appeal, by the CCLNC Commisioner. CCLNC Members 

alleged to be in violation of any provision herein, or any other stated United States Soccer 

Federation or US Club Soccer Codes of Ethics or other guideline will be required to stand before 

the PAD Committee. To hear an issue, the PAD Committee will be made up of at least three who 

will act as the CCLNC Ethics Committee. Allegations of ethics violations will be made in accordance 

with United States Soccer Federation, US Club Soccer and CCLNC bylaws and operating 

procedures, with a copy sent to the Chairman of the PAD Committee. 

1. Reports alleging violations of any CCLNC Rules, Policies, Bylaws or Codes may be made only by 

the Director of Coaching or Club President of the Club making the protest. 

2. Only reports referring to specific violations of the Carolina Champions League Code of Ethics 

will be heard by the PAD committee. Event specific protests such as scheduling or 

communication issues should be forwarded to the appropriate Event Coordinator. Club issues 

not covered in this Code of Ethics should be forwarded to the applicable Committee. 

3. All reports must be made through 

4. Upon issuing a report, all members of the PAD Committee are notified. The Club that is the 

subject of the report will be notified within 48 hours of the making of the protest. Contact 

information provided on the Carolina Champions League Administrator will be used. The PAD 

Committee will not be responsible for Clubs not getting PAD information if their contact 

information is out of date. 

5. The Club making the report should electronically forward to the PAD Committee all evidence, 

including, but not limited to, contact information, emails, photographs, statements and other 

written evidence they wish to have considered. 

6. The Club and individual against whom a report has been filed will then have 72 hours to 

respond in writing to the allegations. 

7. The reporting Club will then have 48 hours to respond in writing to the response from the 

accused Club and individual. 

8. The failure of any Club or individual to respond at any point in this process will result in the 

PAD Committee ruling on the information provided to it. 


9. The PAD Committee will then make a decision regarding the report, pending any additional 

investigation and inquiry the PAD Committee determines necessary or desirable. 

10. The party against whom the PAD Committee ruled will have the ability, for 5 days after the 

PAD Committee publishes its ruling to appeal the ruling. 

11. All appeals must be made in writing to the PAD Committee. To be valid, an appeal must be 

accompanied by an appeal fee of $250. The club making the appeal must include the specific 

grounds for making the appeal and must specifically refer to the CCL bylaw, rule, policy or 

procedure that was inappropriately applied by the PAD Committee in making its decision. The 

fee for the appeal must be received by CCLNC within three calendar days of being filed and should 

be sent to the CCLNC mailing address. 

12. All appeals of PAD Committee decisions will be heard by a committee of the CCL’s Board of 

Directors (the “Appeal Committee”). 

13. The Appeal Committee will review the decision of the PAD Committee. 

14. The Appeal Committee will determine if the PAD Committee misapplied the Rules, Codes, 

Bylaws or other documents governing CCLNC and whether the decision of the PAD Committee is in 

accordance with CCLNC’s policies, rules, guidelines and the good of the game. 

15. The Appeal Committee can decide to uphold the decision of the PAD Committee, overturn 

the decision of the PAD Committee or return the protest to the PAD Committee for a rehearing 

based upon the submission of new evidence that was not available to the PAD Committee when 

the PAD Committee made its decision. A failure by a party to timely submit information to the 

PAD Committee shall not be a reason to order a rehearing. 

16. Any appeal from the decision of the Appeal Committee will be made pursuant to CCLNC’s 

Bylaws and the rules and regulations of US Club Soccer and the United States Soccer 



Section 7 - Penalties for Violations 


Penalties for violations of the Rules, Regulations, Bylaws and other documents governing CCLNC 

will include, but not be limited to the following: 

1. Probation for the violating Club, Player and/or Adult Member. 

2. Suspension of the violating Club, Player, and/or Adult Member. 

3. Expulsion of the violating Club, Player and/or Adult Member. 

4. Required education of the violating Club, Player or Adult Member. 

5. Other penalties as are deemed appropriate by the PAD Committee. 

6. Repeated violations by an Adult Member, Club or Player may result in stricter penalties up to 

and including expulsion from CCL. 

7. Violating decisions of the PAD Committee will result in a stricter penalty. 

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