Heartland Soccer Association 
Celebrates 45 Years of Soccer!
9161 W 133rd Street, Overland Park, KS 66213
Phone: 913-888-8768
Heartland Soccer Association is recognized as one of the largest soccer leagues and tournament hosts in the country. We offer recreational to premier divisions, ages U8 through U19. 
If you want to play college soccer, possibly the most important thing you will do is decide where you want to play. Here's a helpful checklist of things to consider when choosing your soccer program. Click here
This Month in History: February
February 6th 1996

The Wizard of Kansas City

On 6 February 1996, Kansas City acquired the rights to former Everton and Portsmouth winger Preki, who went on to become the club's career leader in goals and assists.
The 32-year old Yugoslav-born American international, whose full name is Predrag Radosavljević, had played for a number of different clubs, including Red Star Belgrade and three different American indoor soccer teams, before joining Kansas City for the first MLS season.

After spending the 2001 season with Miami, he returned to Kansas City in 2002 and the next year was again the scoring champion and league MVP. (He rejoined Kansas City in a supplemental draft after Miami folded, but only after every other team in the league declined to sign him).

He retired from playing after the 2005 season, but moved quickly into management, joining Chivas USA as an assistant in 2006 and taking full rein of the club in 2007. Chivas won the conference that year, leading to Preki being named the MLS Coach of the Year. By 2009, however, the club was struggling, which led to his departure and a brief but unsuccessful spell in charge of Toronto in 2010, the same year he was inducted into the US Soccer Hall of Fame.

We would LOVE if you supported Heartland Soccer Association and here are a few ways to do that:

  1. Follow us on Instagram
  2. Follow us on Twitter
  3. Follow us on Facebook
  4. Like & Share our posts
  5. Tell friends to sign up for the newsletter
  6. Volunteer for a tournament
  7. Become a referee
  8. Send us team pictures!
  9. Purchase Heartland apparel
  10. Purchase tournament apparel
  11. Become a sponsor!
  12. Attend a tournament and bring a friend!
  13. Support our sponsors
  14. Become a Field Marshal
Ease back into Springtime Sports  
Spring can be a peak time for injuries as people rush back into warm weather sports without being properly prepared, an expert says.
"Many weekend warriors either may not be exercising during the week, or if they are, they're not exercising in ways that help prevent injury before going full force into a weekend of playing sports," Dr. Justin Connor, pediatric orthopedic surgeon and sports medicine specialist at Overland Park Regional Medical Center
"In these adults, I see a lot of acute tendon or muscle injuries, such as a torn Achilles tendon or a pulled hamstring. Teens tend to have a lot of overuse injuries. Many teen athletes play multiple sports or play the same sport on multiple teams, so they're at risk for tendonitis, stress fractures and shin splints," Dr. Connors says.
He offers a number of injury prevention tips.
"Weekend warriors and recreational athletes should include some type of athletic training during the week, ideally twice a week, to help strengthen the muscles they use in their dominant sport," Dr. Connors says.
Even working out once a week can decrease the likelihood of injury. Training should mimic the sport played and include more explosive types of exercises, such as jumping rope, lifting weights or sprint intervals, he recommends.
Teenagers who play sports multiple days in a row need to take time off for recovery too. Dr. Connors recommends that teens relax and let their muscles and tendons rest on days off.
Besides helping to prevent injury, there's an extra benefit from rest – a positive impact on performance.
"Teens also should strive for good nutrition to properly fuel their bodies. They should eat meals between practices that include vegetables and lean proteins and stay well hydrated with water and sports drinks," Dr. Connors says.
It's important to make sure any injury is fully healed before heading back to play. Going back too soon puts athletes at risk of repeat injuries.
But, he said it's sometimes hard to tell the difference between an injury and soreness. A little soreness for a few days is normal.
"In general, be aware of what feels or sounds like a 'snap' or 'pop,' or any swelling or pain that gets worse. These usually indicate an injury that needs medical attention," Dr. Connor says.
HCA Midwest Health is the official healthcare provider for Heartland Soccer Association and we work with parents and coaches to keep athletes safe and on the field of play year round, learn more about our services at www.hcamidwest.com
Referee Review
We would like to have each team have at least 2 or 3 certified referees this Spring season to help with the ref shortages! 
There are approximately 400 - 800 games a weekend held at 
4 - 6 locations so you can choose the day, times and number of games you can work, some referees earn $400 a weekend working multiple games! 
Click where it says “Entry Level Referee Classes”, it does not look like it is a link, but it does link you to the site where you sign up for the classes.
Classes are at the SCHEELS Overland Park Soccer Complex at the following dates and times:
New Officials (www.kansasreferee.org)
February 5th – 8am – 12pm – 13 years old and older
February 6th – 8am – 12pm – 13 years old and older
February 12th 8am – 12pm – 13 years old and older
February 13th – 8am – 4pm – 12 years old and under
All questions regarding these classes please email:
Christine Kramer
Referee Corner
You make the call - Fouls – Understanding Law 12…
 Let’s look at some test questions that are on the 2022 Grassroots Referee Recertification test to check our application of the Laws of the Game. These questions require that we understand the basics of the Law and they do present unique and challenging situations.  

A player who is off the field of play to receive medical treatment trips a player who is on the field of play. What decision does the Referee make?
The Referee shows a red card and sends off the player. Play is restarted with an indirect free kick.
The Referee shows a yellow card and cautions the player. Play is restarted with an indirect free kick.
The Referee either cautions or sends off the player as appropriate. Play is restarted with either a Penalty Kick or a direct free kick.
The Referee cautions the player and restarts with a dropped ball.
The steps in analyzing what decision the Referee should do include the designation of the participants in a soccer match, what does it take to commit a foul that is punishable with a direct free kick, and which fouls are punished with what kind of restart.

Participants in a soccer match: There are multiple participants in each soccer match.   
Players: Assuming 11 players on a side, the players are the participants who are allowed to be on the field.
Substitutes: These are players in waiting. They can only participate in the match with the permission of the Referee. For a substitute to become a player, another player needs to leave the field.
Team Officials: Coaches, Assistant Coaches, and administrators with credentials. They cannot become players. However, they can be sanctioned (yellow and red cards) for their actions.
Fans: An important part of the game, but they cannot participate in the playing of the game on the field.

The test question defines the person off the field receiving medical treatment as a player.
Requirements for a Direct Free Kick foul: The Laws of the Game say that for a foul to result in a Direct Free Kick restart, it must:

  1. Be committed by a player
  2. Against an opponent
  3. While the ball is in play
  4. On the field of play

In our test question, we can confirm that a player committed the action. The question also says that this player trips another player (an opponent) on the field of play. The assumption that the ball is in play is correct. You have a player doing something to an opponent while the ball is in play. The trip occurred on the field of play. Do we have the requirements for a direct free kick restart? It depends on the foul.

Direct Free Kick fouls: The Laws of the Game list 13 offenses that will result in a direct free kick restart if the requirements for a direct free kick foul (above) are met. These offenses include:
With the mouth:
Spitting at
With the body:
Jumping At
Impeding with contact
With the Legs:
With the Arms
Throwing an object
The specific foul in the test question was tripping, which results in a direct free kick restart.

Putting it all together:
We have a foul that was committed by a player (even though the player was off the field receiving medical attention, he/she was still designated as a player) against a player on the other team (i.e., an opponent). The foul occurred on the field of play and while the ball was in play.  
The foul was tripping. Tripping is one of the 13 named fouls that result in direct free kick restarts.
This set of facts means that answers a and b are not correct (tripping is a direct free kick restart). Dropped balls are the restart when there is a stoppage that is not an infraction of the Laws of the Game. We had a trip so this answer cannot be correct.
The only correct answer when you include all the necessary factors from the Laws of the Game is one that includes tripping and a direct free kick restart.

This was a tricky question. But the location and timing of the foul (on the field of play while the ball was in play) and the participants (a player and an opponent) highlight that the primary considerations apply as well as the location where the action took place. It was on the field of play so the restart would be where the foul occurred.
Let’s consider one more question to make sure we understand how these considerations combine to shape a decision.  

While the ball is in play, a defender positioned inside her own penalty area, strikes an opponent who is outside the penalty area with excessive force. What decision does the Referee make?

The Referee sends off the defender, shows the red card and awards a penalty kick
The Referee sends off the defender, shows the red card and awards a direct free kick where the opponent was located
The Referee sends off the defender, shows the red card and awards a dropped ball where the opponent was located
The Referee sends off the defender, shows a red card and awards a dropped ball where the defender was located.

Let’s apply what we learned from the previous question. Do we have a player and an opponent involved in this situation? Yes, we do. Is the ball in play? Yes. Did the foul occur on the field of play? Yes. Was it one of the 13 named direct free kick restarts? Yes.

The added information in this question is that the strike was done with excessive force. Fouls can be made in the following ways:
Careless – we will call this a normal foul. Soccer is a contact sport, and some contact is illegal (the 13 named fouls). Most fouls are considered careless
Reckless – this is a more serious foul. When the Referee determines that a foul was committed in a reckless manner, they are required to issue the yellow card
Endangering the safety of an opponent or using excessive force – in this instance the amount of force far exceeds what is considered legal. Whenever a Referee sees the words excessive force on a test, the answer is always a red card.

To correctly answer this question, we confirm that we have met the conditions for a direct free kick foul. In addition, we are told that the foul was done with “excessive force.” This means we will have to look for a choice that includes a red card. All the answers include red card, so which one is the correct decision?

Let’s go back to the previous question. We determined that the position of the player is not the determinant of where the restart will be. The primary determinant is where the foul occurred. The defender who is in the penalty area, strikes an attacker who is outside the penalty area. The foul happened outside the penalty area. For a penalty kick, the foul needs to be committed by the defender inside his/her penalty area. This didn’t happen so we would have a direct free kick restart where the foul occurred.

As you can see, understanding the basics is critical to making correct decisions. Now you know what is required for a direct free kick restart. You also know that the location of the foul is where the restart takes place unless the foul is done by a defender in their penalty area. This would result in a penalty kick.

Looking forward to sharing more about the application of the Laws of the Game as the season progresses. We invite you to become a certified Referee so you can make the call on the field.
The Referee Blog
Getting Ready for the Spring Season 2 …. Is the Referee shortage real? How does it look for Kansas in 2022?
In last month’s article I shared how we were doing in Kansas in certifying/recertifying Referees for 2022. Let’s look at how we are doing a month later and what each of us can do to make sure we can grow our game to accommodate the players and leagues.
Here are the most current numbers (as of January 30th) which includes the number of people signed up for Entry Level Clinics through February 20th:
We project adding 500 additional Referees to the pool by the end of February. However, this number is not enough to support the anticipated number of matches. Remember we had 2,400 Referees in 2020. Here are some additional facts about the pool of Referees:

Over 70% of the current pool is between the ages of 12 and 17
30% of the officials over age 18 are 50 years old or older

The Referee pool is skewed to the younger ages (less experienced but eager to contribute to your soccer experience). The over 18 Referee population is the core group that supports Heartland league matches and other levels of competition (High School, Adult, and the increasing number of semi-pro matches). How many matches can a Referee do effectively in a week remains an open question.

What are the reasons for this decline in the numbers? A search of the internet gives us some clues:
The Covid-19 pandemic influenced a number of Referees to not recertify. This was more prevalent in the population of older Referees (the group at most risk). As the pandemic gets more under control, we can expect that some of these Referees will come back to the game.
When soccer came to a halt in 2019 potential Referees found other ways to earn income. With the schedules full again, we hope that more young people will recognize the value of being a Referee (good pay, life skills development, personal growth, and becoming a more knowledgeable and better soccer player).
The fans are back after isolation because of the pandemic. The fans came back with pent-up passion that has sometimes manifested in inappropriate side-line behavior. Many states are reporting that this has contributed to Referee’s leaving the game. They aren’t willing to put up with abuse from the sidelines anymore.

What can each of do to keep our beautiful game growing? The primary key is to continue to build the pool of Referees so there are enough officials to cover your team’s matches. Here is an action list for each of us to consider.  

  1. Become a Referee. There are many positive benefits to taking this step. From exercise to extra money to a better understanding of the game to building important life skills to being involved in the game you love.

Here is the schedule for new Entry Level Clinics through February:
NOTE: Masks are required for those attending Entry Level Clinics.
You can get the details on how to sign up for any of these classes from the following website: https://www.kansasreferee.org/page/show/5763133-for-new-officials

  1. If you are a Referee but have not yet recertified: The recertification for 2022 is completely online for 2022. You can get the details on classes and how to sign up at the following website: https://www.kansasreferee.org/page/show/5763134-for-returning-officials
  2. If you are a fan: Support your team and please support the Referee team. Retention is needed for us to build the numbers back. If you have concerns about decisions, share your concerns with your coach.  
  3. If you are a coach: When you or your parents have concerns, please report them to the Assignors at the location or complete a Referee evaluation. This information will be shared with the Mentors, and we can meet with the Referees to build their skills. Trying to influence a Referee to change their calls seldom works and the longer term impact could be a Referee shortage.

It is almost time to get back to the fields. Your Referees are as excited as you. Let’s continue to grow a soccer community that is focused on building to be better… better players, better Referees and more fun for the fans. Thank you.
Heartland Referee Meetings
Referees of all ages and experience levels are encouraged to attend Heartland's monthly referee meetings! Join us to learn tips and tricks for ARs and Referees, fun games, vital information, and fabulous prizes! Parents are always welcome. 
Get certified to be a referee!

As our local soccer community grows, the need for new and experienced referees continues. Join America's Largest Soccer League. More details on referee meeting schedules, training and education can be found on the 
Get to know Alexander

When did you start reffing? 2017

What made you decide to get certified to referee? I wanted a better understanding for the sport

What is your favorite part about reffing? Watching others play and seeing family/friends at games

What is a life lesson you feel you have learned from reffing? How to maintain your composure and focus

When did you start reffing futsal? 2021

What is your favorite part about reffing futsal? The fast paced play of the game

What level of referee to you aspire to be? I’d love to have the chance to ref high school games, but i’m fine where i am now

Do you play soccer? I do play soccer for OPSC and I play high school soccer for Blue Valley West. I’ve played soccer for most of my life

Do you participate in any sports/activities? I participate in School soccer and I play school volleyball for fun, I enjoy both because of the competitiveness and I enjoy playing with my friends

What was the last book you read? What was it about? Unbroken, it is about a WW2 veteran who was an olympic athlete and was captured by the japanese soldiers, the story is about his journey and how he survived in Japan

What was your favorite part about the book? My favorite part of the book was sections where there was air combat since the main character was a pilot

What types of movies do you like? I enjoy watching action and comedy movies, the last movie I saw was Spider-man: No Way Home, my favorite part was when all the different Spider-man’s from different universes appeared in the same movie

What is your favorite sports team? I love the chiefs and my favorite player is Tyreek Hill due to his speed and he’s a funny guy
2022 Spring State Tournaments Registration Open!
The Spring 2022 Kansas State Cup, Presidents Cup and Junior State Cup will be divided into separate events this Spring season. The registration dates and deadlines for each event will be different so all teams interested should be check each events website for more details.
2022 Kansas State Cup
Age Divisions: 
Boys 13U - 19U
& Girls 13U - 14U 

Group Play Game 1: 
 May 12th & 13th, 2022
Group Play Game 2:  
May 19th & 20th, 2022
Group Play Game 3:  
June 2nd & 3rd, 2022
 Semi-Finals & Finals Weekend: June 5th & 6th, 2022

Garmin Olathe Soccer Complex
10529 South Warwick St Olathe, KS 66061
State Cup Website: Click Here
2022 Kansas
Presidents Cup 
Age Divisions:
Boys 13U - 19U
& Girls 13U - 14U 

Dates:  May 4th - 8th, 2022

Stryker Sports Complex
2999 N Greenwich Rd. Wichita, KS 67226
Presidents Cup Website:
2022 Kansas Junior
State Cup

Age Divisions: 
Boys & Girls 11U - 12U 

Dates: April 22 - 24th, 2022

Stryker Sports Complex
2999 N Greenwich Rd. Wichita, KS 67226
Jr. State Cup Website: 
The 2022 Annual General Meeting (AGM) for Kansas Youth Soccer will be done VIRTUALLY on Sunday February 27th, 2022. All soccer clubs in Kansas are invited to attend and get updates from the past year and plans for the future. Registrar & Club Members of KSYSA will be eligible to vote on any bylaw, constitution, policies and elections that are needed to be voted on during the AGM. Non-Direct Members are able to register and express concerns or questions to their district commissioners representing their area of the state. Here are the details:
Date: February 27, 2022
Time: 7:00 PM
Location: Virtually on Zoom 
Deadline for Amendment Proposals: December 29, 2021
KSYSA Board of Directors Positions for Election: VP of Competitive, VP of Recreation, Secretary, All District Commissioners and Alternate District Commissioners
KSYSA Board of Directors Candidate Applications Deadline: January 28, 2022
For more detailed information and to RSVP please visit https://www.kansasyouthsoccer.org/agm/ or CLICK HERE. 
Become a Soccer Referee! Give back to the Soccer Community!
Do you enjoy exercise & fitness? Do you enjoy making your own schedule? Are you interested in making some extra money during your soccer weekends? Are you someone wanting to give back to your soccer community?

Become a Soccer Referee! Our soccer community is in search of more Referees so our players can play the beautiful game. No referees, then it's practice!

Click the below link 👇🏽 and follow the specific instruction to register for an Entry Level Referee Clinic.


Join the Referee Team this Spring soccer season and be apart of the Beautiful Game!

All currently certified referees from 2021 looking to certify for 2022 the process is all done ONLINE so visit the Kansas Referee website to get Re-Certified!

Kansas Youth Soccer Partners with Fearless & Capable!
Olathe, KS January 14, 2022 – We are proud to announce that Kansas State Youth Soccer Association (KSYSA) has partnered with Fearless & Capable as its newest organization partner. The partnership between Fearless & Capable and Kansas Youth Soccer will focus on supporting female coaches, referees, and administrators across the state by providing the opportunity for meaningful mentorship from women across the country to the females working in Kansas. 

Female coaches, referees and administrators will be able to join the growing Fearless & Capable membership program, and explore one-on-one mentoring sessions with a trained mentor to grow their skill sets in a holistic and supportive environment.

Read more by CLICKING HERE

Register Today for US Soccer Grassroots D License this Spring!

Registration Deadline is March 16th, 2022!
US Soccer Grassroots D License
Virtual Meeting: March 21st
In-Person Weekend #1: April 29th - May 1st 
In-Person Weekend #2: June 10-12th 
Compass Minerals National Performance Center
1913 Pinnacle Way
Kansas City, KS 66111
The Grassroots D Course is held over two weekends this fall for coaches that meet the prerequisites of US Soccer. The focus of this course is to facilitate the improvement of the candidates in the Six Tasks of a Coach across all four game models (4v4, 7v7, 9v9, 11v11) with a particular emphasis on Coaching Training Sessions.
To see what coaching courses are coming up please CLICK HERE.

Questions on Coaching Education please contact Kansas Youth Soccer Director of Coaching Paul Fabry via email at [email protected].
Kansas Youth Soccer Coaching Education Department is offering multiple coaching courses this winter for soccer coaches to get more education to better their players on the field. Don’t miss out on these opportunities to expand your soccer knowledge during the off season and be a better coach come the Spring season.   

Date:  Friday March 4, 2022
Time:  5:30pm - 9:30pm

Date:  Saturday March 5, 2022
Time:  9:00am – 1:00pm

Location:  Compass Minerals National Performance Center;
1913 Pinnacle Way Kansas City, KS 66111

Date:  Sunday March 4, 2022
Time:  9:00AM - 1:00PM

Date:  Saturday March 5, 2022
Time:  2:00Pm – 6:00pm

Location:  Stryker Sports Complex
2999 N Greenwich Rd. Wichita, KS 67226
AB May
Academy Sports and Outdoors
AC Print
Barley's Kitchen and Tap
BFAME KC Entertainment
Capelli Sport
City Thrift
Commercial Capital
Dick's Sporting Goods
Drs. Hawks, Besler, Rogers & Stoppel
Discount Tire
Easton Roofing
Hasty Awards
HCA Midwest Health
Jersey Boyz Deli & Subs
Jimmy John's
KC Current
Kansas City Comets
K.C. Hopps
Krusich Dental
Land of Paws
Levine Advertising
Menorah Medical Center
Molle Toyota
Momo Bands
Museum at Prairiefire
Orange Leaf Frozen Yogurt
Overland Park Regional Medical Center
Papa John's
Pittcraft Printing
Raising Cane's
Rob Ellerman and 
Reece Nichols Real Estate
Research Medical Center
Salty Iguana
Security Bank
Slim Chickens
Soccer Master
Sporting Kansas City
Sporting Kansas City II
Starting Point Pediatric Dentistry and Orthodontics
State Farm-Harlan Parker
Taco Bell
The Merchant Fitness
The Rub Bar-B-Que
The Sheridan at Overland Park
Trace (Alpine Replay, Inc.)
Tropical Smoothie Cafe
TW Sportswear + Print, Ship & Signs
Urban Air
Heartland Soccer Association is seeking action photo shots of kids of all ages and abilities playing soccer in Heartland League Games or Tournaments. Submitted photos may be included in Heartland Tournament, League and other promotional materials as well as social media posts.

Instructions for submitting photos:
All submitted photo files must be .jpg format, must be a minimum of 1,200 x 1,600 pixels, and no larger than 2 MB in size. Submitting a photo doesn't guarantee that it will be used.

By submitting a photo for consideration for use in Heartland Soccer Association promotional materials, you agree that:

1.  You are the sole author of the photograph and control all rights for its use. The photograph is original. You have the rights to grant usage of the photograph as stated below. There has been no prior sale, publication or transfer of rights to the photograph. The photograph shall not contain any libelous or scandalous matter. To the best of your knowledge, the photograph's creation, publication and use shall not infringe any copyright, right of privacy or right of publicity, or infringe or violate any right of any third party.
2.  You grant to Heartland Soccer Association all rights to use the photograph in any and all forms of media, including but not limited to electronic, digital media and print.
3.   You allow Heartland Soccer Association the right to edit, revise, adapt and crop the photo as necessary.

Send Photo submissions to: [email protected]
Sign the petition and show the world that Kansas City deserves to be a host city for the WORLD CUP!!!

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