NEW YORK – Major League Soccer (MLS) and RCX Sports today announced the launch of MLS GO, a recreational soccer program designed to increase participation and access for boys and girls outside of the existing soccer ecosystem. Powered by MLS, MLS GO engages with existing community organizations and local recreation programs to provide boys and girls, ages 4 to 14 with a fun, affordable, local soccer experience.
Philadelphia was announced as a part of the inaugural 18 markets who will pilot this program beginning in Fall 2023. Over the course of a season, players will feel like a pro as they learn the game, have fun, and wear MLS Club-branded uniforms while playing alongside friends in their local community league.
Full release from Major League Soccer below.
MLS launches MLS GO to increase participation and access in communities across North America
Recreation program focused on growing the sport to debut in 18 markets this fall — RCX Sports to serve as program’s official operating partner
NEW YORK (Tuesday, May 23, 2023) – Major League Soccer (MLS) and RCX Sports today announced the launch of MLS GO, a recreational soccer program designed to increase participation and access for boys and girls outside of the existing soccer ecosystem. Powered by MLS, MLS GO engages with existing community organizations and local recreation programs to provide boys and girls, ages 4 to 14 with a fun, affordable, local soccer experience.
Over the course of a season, players will feel like a pro as they learn the game, have fun, and wear MLS Club-branded uniforms while playing alongside friends in their local community league. The program will debut this fall in 18 markets: 12 MLS, three MLS NEXT, and three additional cities that will be introduced to the MLS ecosystem for the first time.
Birmingham, Ala.; Phoenix, Ariz.; Los Angeles, Calif.; Denver, Colo.; Washington, D.C.; Orlando, FL; New Orleans, La.; Foxborough, Mass.; Detroit, Mich.; Las Vegas, Nev.; New York, N.Y.; Charlotte, N.C.; Cincinnati, Ohio; Columbus, Ohio; Philadelphia, Pa.; Dallas, Texas; Seattle, Wash. (Launching Spring 2024); Milwaukee, Wis.
“MLS GO will provide an opportunity for children across the country to play soccer and create a direct connection between our MLS clubs and future soccer fans,” said Kyle Albrecht, MLS Senior Director of Properties. “We are excited to work with RCX Sports and local community organizations to provide a structured introductory soccer program, with connections to a developmental pathway that will enable greater access to the sport, regardless of age, gender, location, or talent level.”
RCX Sports, the leader in organized youth sports experiences, will serve as the program’s official operating partner to help facilitate the launch and growth of MLS GO. RCX Sports works with professional leagues, national governing bodies, sports-centric businesses, and brands to reimagine youth sports experiences and is committed to improving the accessibility and inclusivity of sports by creating opportunities for all athletes to play.
“Soccer is the most widely played sport globally, and many times, it is the first organized sport people in the United States will play as children. We’re proud to partner with MLS to improve the accessibility and inclusivity of the sport for youth athletes across the country," said RCX Sports CEO Izell Reese. "MLS GO will expand the communal reach MLS clubs have within their market and introduce new markets to the MLS ecosystem in a fun and affordable space for children.”
MLS and MOJO, the official grassroots and coaching education partner of the league, have curated an educational program for MLS GO coaches and participants to enhance their overall playing experience and elevate their soccer skills and knowledge and provide tools for players to improve their skills in the sport. MLS GO program operators will also receive exclusive discounts on MOJO's suite of organizational tools, streamlining operations and enhancing team management capabilities.
“For many young players and coaches, MLS GO will be their first experience playing and coaching soccer. In partnership with MOJO, we are committed to delivering fun and age-appropriate training programs that develop not only soccer skills, but also a lifelong love of the game,” said Fred Lipka, MLS Vice President of Player and Youth Development. “The MOJO app will provide coaches with a roadmap to execute their practice sessions, better supporting the coaches that are leading our MLS GO players and shaping the soccer experience at the grassroots level in a fun and easy to follow format.”
With a continued commitment to provide greater access to the sport, MLS has made a financial commitment to ensure as many players as possible have the opportunity to play in MLS GO leagues by removing financial barriers to participation.
Applications will be facilitated through the RCX Sports Foundation.
Fall registration will open this month with the first games slated to kick off in August. Participants interested in learning more about MLS GO should visit www.MLSGO.com
ABOUT MAJOR LEAGUE SOCCER
Headquartered in New York City, Major League Soccer -- celebrating its 28th season in 2023 -- features 29 clubs throughout the United States and Canada. An expansion club in San Diego, the league’s 30th team, will begin play in 2025. For more information about MLS, visit MLSsoccer.com.
ABOUT RCX SPORTS
RCX Sports is the premier youth sports experiences business, running and operating leagues, camps, combines, tournaments, and events. Working directly with professional leagues, national governing bodies, and sports-centric businesses, such as MLS, NFL, Jr. NBA, MLB, NHL, and NAIA, RCX is committed to improving the accessibility and inclusivity of sports by creating opportunities for all athletes to play.