Amherst Soccer and Empire United Partnership

Clubs seek to grow and expand opportunities for players

Amherst Soccer Association and Empire United Announce New Soccer Development Partnership

Amherst, N.Y. – The Amherst Soccer Association and Empire United Soccer Academy entered into a new partnership in 2017 to elevate soccer development for players from across Western New York. The two long-standing youth soccer organizations launched an innovative “Path to Development” program beginning in the 2017-2018 soccer season.  The progress has been slow but, ASA has obtained some coaches and trainers from Empire, sent some high potential players to Empire practices and tryouts, received some players for a few teams that didn't quite make the cut at Empire.  Additionally, we have run some joint seminars and coaching sessions, brainstorming meetings and the two clubs continue to seek ways to improve opportunites for the players and identify ways to support and assist each other.

The Path to Development program partners Amherst Soccer Association House and Travel coaches, players, and teams with Empire United’s professionally licensed coaches and trainers for elevated skill development. The program will focus on advancing and training volunteer parents, coaches, and players to reach their maximum development in the sport. Additionally, players with elevated passion and skill will be identified and invited to participate with the Empire United premier program – a way to guide and ensure a proper path to developmental success.

Together, the two organizations will conduct continuing education clinics for coaches and staff, as well as establish a Discovery Player program where players can potentially transition to premier level play with Empire United while still maintaining their position on an Amherst Soccer team.  This year, the clubs will create a lower cost tier for those wishing to participate at both clubs as developmental, dual card players and also offer no-cost training opportunties for select players.   Amherst and Empire will further advance this concept by combining tryouts this year.

ASA was established in 1978 to provide opportunities to children in soccer. Amherst Soccer Association is a volunteer, non-profit organization dedicated to providing children instruction, enjoyment and competition in the sport and enjoys over 2,000 annual registrations for children age 3 –19. Visit to learn more or register, today.

Chris Uppington, Technical Director, Amherst Soccer Association:

Amherst Soccer is proud to enter into a player-centered development partnership with Empire United. Empire is the only non-profit premier club and has the highest integrity in the soccer community. This path will be the preeminent way for a young soccer player to grow and reach their fullest potential, whether local travel, premier travel or academy play. The development approach, training plans and philosophy of Empire align with our motto of Where Player Development Comes First

Tom Garigen, Vice Chairman/Buffalo Director of Coaching, Empire United:

“ This is the perfect alignment of complimentary, long-standing, Western New York soccer organizations whose success in developing soccer players and in creating positive growth environments is unmatched. Everyone at Empire is very excited about the partnership and our future together.”

Amherst Soccer Association Board of Directors statement:

“ We look forward to the ability to provide access to more quality soccer coaches throughout our programs and to the ability to offer advice, guidance and direction to those soccer players who show the aspiration, passion and commitment to go as far in soccer as they dream. We feel that this decision to partner with Empire will create a path for the player who aspires to Academy or College play in their future, while also helping us give EVERY house or travel player, casual or serious, the best personal experience.”


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