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Is it possible to play professional soccer after college in the USA?

In short, yes, but of course it is only for the very few that are ready to go above and beyond than the rest of the soccer players. And of course, you need a little luck to not get injured, be seen by the right people and more. 

Many male or female soccer players come to us asking about the level of soccer in the US compared to the level in the EU. Naturally, it is asked less by the female players. The male players express more of a concern about the soccer level in the US. Even though soccer is a team sport, to answer these questions we need to look at every player individually, because we have seen players from small EU clubs with no special soccer history having multiple pro offers after college as well as players from top EU clubs with great references coming to the US and not making it. There is no blueprint that fits every single player, but there are general rules that are well known that can put you in the right direction. 

Let’s go over some points that might be the difference between soccer in the EU and USA.

Soccer stadium at Grand Canyon University

The Challenge 

  • In both the men’s and women’s soccer, the chances of making it to the professional clubs are getting slimmer every year and right now it’s about 1% of the players who make it. Only few people in this world understand how difficult it is for a 17 or 18 year-old player to leave their home country and move across the ocean. And to basically start from zero to prove they deserve the scholarship or the starting position. If you look into the biography of almost all of the pro-players, they have a couple things in common. One of them is that they went through some very difficult challenges from which they came out much stronger and better. This can also become Your challenge. 

The Benefits of College Soccer

  • Overall, college soccer is a step up. It’s a step up in athleticism; a step up in intensity; a step up in self-discipline. There’s over 1,200 colleges that offer soccer programs and scholarships for men’s and women’s players. For most of the players, this is the first time they play against players that are 4-5 years older than them on a regular basis. There are not many places in the world where the players get to play high-level soccer without actually playing the full adult game, so this is a great step between youth and adult soccer.

Former College Players Playing in the Professional Game

  • The list of professional players that played at the College Level is truly long, but just to list a few, so that everyone gets the idea that this is possible.
  • Jack Harrison – Wake Forest University 
  • DeAndre Yedlin – Akron University 
  • Lucy Bronze – University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
  • Jodie Taylor – Oregon State University
  • Matt Turner – Fairfield University 

“But if I leave for the US, I’ll lose all opportunities back home…”

  • This is also a very common assumption that many soccer players tell us. If the player is good enough to be offered a professional contract in their home country that is at least average or above average in their age group, we advise our players to take it and stay home. Unfortunately, many players believe they are good enough to play professionally in their home country after they finish their youth soccer career. However, no offers are available to them and at that point it is almost too late to try to find the best opportunity to play in the US.

The Bigger Picture

  • There is no place in the world where you are able to combine soccer and academics like in the US. If the goal is to become a professional soccer player and no contract has been offered to you at the age of 17, it is time to look at the bigger picture. The university system in the USA gives you additional 4-years to develop as a soccer player while also receiving a bachelor degree at the end as a bonus. You can work on your weaknesses that are holding you down and in 4 years you can potentially choose to play professional soccer or follow different opportunities based on your 4-year college degree and experience. 

Want to Know More?

  • If you’re interested in the possibility of playing college soccer, but you are not 100% sure if it’s the right choice, contact us! You have nothing to lose from having the discussion with us and discovering your options.

We can be reached via email – .We will get back to you with additional information and help you plan your next steps in your future!.

Soccer stadium at Creighton University