Located at Soccer House in Chicago, Ill., the U.S. Soccer Federation’s Referee Department’s main function is to facilitate referee development and training. Seminars are held throughout the year to instruct and prepare referees of all grades through classroom lectures, field practicals and video review. With successful professional leagues like Major League Soccer (MLS), United Soccer Leagues (USL) and Women’s Professional Soccer (WPS), it is imperative that the officials we provide reflect the same high level of play and professionalism that those leagues present.
U.S. Soccer has more than 140,000 registered referees, covering the game at all levels from youth through professional. Identification of future professional referees is one of our biggest priorities, and with the creation of the U.S. Soccer Development Academy in 2007 there is now a proper avenue for the training and mentoring of young referees. At Academy events throughout the year, U.S. Soccer staff attends and observes officials to give them feedback on their performance. Additionally, staff is also looking to identify particularly skilled referees to invite them to U.S. Soccer camps for advanced training.