The Illinois State Cup is the most prestigious tournament in Illinois and the official state championship tournament of the US Youth Soccer National Championship Series.
Don’t be confused by similarly named league tournaments claiming to be a "state cup" championship.
Since 1966, even before its incorporation, Illinois Youth Soccer has been conducting this official annual state competition that is part of the national US Youth Soccer National Championship Series. The Illinois State Cup provides an opportunity for approximately 350 teams in the under 12 to 19 age groups to showcase their soccer skills against the best competition. Winners of the Illinois State Cup advance to the US Youth Soccer Midwest Regional Tournament and have the opportunity to qualify for the US Youth Soccer National Championship Finals. The national finals are a culmination of a year-long series of competitions at the state and regional levels providing approximately 185,000 players on 10,000 teams from US Youth Soccer’s 55 State Associations to compete against the best teams in the nation. The Illinois State Cup is one of the largest State Cup competitions in the United States.
The Illinois State Cup is ONLY open to all Illinois Youth Soccer/US Youth Soccer competitive member teams.
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Important 2021 Fall Cup Dates
ALL DATES SUBJECT TO CHANGE
WHO CAN PLAY IN STATE CUP?
This tournament is open to any Illinois Youth Soccer Association (IYSA) currently registered team comprised of properly registered and rostered youth players that participates in an IYSA only division of an IYSA affiliated competitive league; Illinois Women's Soccer League (IWSL), Young Sportsmen's Soccer League (YSSL), Central Illinois Youth Soccer League (CIYSL), St Louis Youth Soccer Association Illinois (SLYSA), ILLOWA or LDE Soccer League; during the current soccer year. The team must be in good standing and in compliance with Illinois Youth Soccer rules and requirements.
WHICH PLAYERS CAN BE ON MY STATE CUP ROSTER?
In 2012 Illinois Youth Soccer and the US Youth Soccer National Championship Series moved to the Club Pass system. The Club Pass allows teams to use on their State Cup roster any player from within their club that is currently registered with an Illinois Youth Soccer competitive member league. Players from outside the club are NOT ALLOWED on State Cup rosters. NO GUEST PLAYERS!
Rosters are frozen once a team plays their first game. Players can only be listed on one State Cup or Presidents Cup roster.
Players that play in the Fall Cups are ineligible to play in the Spring event.
A team may have on its team roster only players of the following age groups for the seasonal year in which the team is participating in the National Championships:
(1) For teams competing in the Under 13, Under 14, and Under 15 age groups, each player on the team must be (A) of the age of the age group competition in which the team is participating in that seasonal year, or (B) of the age in either of the next 2 younger age groups of that age group competition in which the team is participating in that seasonal year.
(2) For the teams competing in the Under 16, Under 17, Under 18, and Under 19 age groups, each player on the team must be (A) of the age of the age group competition in which the team is participating in that seasonal year, or (B) of the age of any younger age group, through the Under 14 age group, of that age group competition in which the team is participating in that seasonal year.
For Under-13, seeds are determined as follows*
Seeds for U14-U18 will be determined as follows:
Any vacant group play spots and/or placement for play-in games will be filled by the
*Seeds will remain with the club that earned them during the previous competition season. IYSA does reserve the right to adjust seeds as needed or to remove a seed from a team.
All other teams are placed in the competition based on a double blind draw.
HOW DOES THE GROUP SCORING WORK?
Teams will compete in the single elimination Open Cup until the Round of 16. The final 16 teams will compete in a points-based group round-robin format. Group winners advance to semifinal and then championship play. If only 16 teams apply then we start with the round robin format.
Group play will be based on the same scoring used at the US Youth Soccer Midwest Regionals:
If group play ends in a tie, the following criteria will determine tie-breakers.
Games will be assigned a specific date and location upon the release of the brackets. Teams can mutually agree to play those matches on another date and at a different location as long as it is played BEFORE the date Illinois Youth Soccer has scheduled it for and they submit that game info by the game change deadline:
Teams must play quarterfinals, semifinals and finals in Rockford on the Illinois Youth Soccer assigned day. SAT/ACT or school events such as homecoming, other sporting events, etc will NOT be considered to change elimination round matches. There are multiple dates and locations to take the SAT/ACT test and coaches should notify their players of play dates so they can plan accordingly to avoid conflicts.
TEAMS DO NOT ASSIGN REFEREES FOR HOME-TEAM-HOST GAMES. The State Cup Referee Assignor will assign the officiating crew upon receipt of the above listed information.
Teams also bring the player cards and pinnies for players sitting on the bench.
WHAT DOES ILLINOIS YOUTH SOCCER PAY FOR EACH TEAM ADVANCING TO REGIONALS?
For each Illinois team that advances to the US Youth Soccer Midwest Regional Tournament, Illinois Youth Soccer pays the regional team entry fee and the cost to send an Illinois referee for each team to regionals. Illinois Youth Soccer pays approximately $2500 per team for the regionals.
State Cup champions also receive champion packets from Illinois Youth Soccer
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