The Soccer Tournament (TST) is coming to Cary, North Carolina this June! TST is positioned to be the world’s greatest 7-on-7 soccer championship as teams compete for a $1,000,000.00 prize!!! The games will be held on June 1st through 4th at the Wake Med Soccer Park.
TBT Enterprises, has long been known for their The Basketball Tournament. The founder, Jon Mugar has grown the brand and its basketball tournament for almost ten years. Two former soccer stars including Henry Tembo and Michael Volk partnered with Mugar to replicate his basketball model for soccer. They came up with the idea of holding a 7v7 tournament, and thus TST was created.
I spoke with Michael Volk, an ex-professional player. He played soccer for The University of Virginia in College. They won the National Championship at Wake Med and so he was delighted when they were able to utilize the Wake Med Soccer Park fields for the inaugural TST event
The goal of TST is to become the preeminent world championship tournament for 7v7 soccer. They hope to bring in players from around the world for an annual competition. 32 teams will compete against each other for a grand prize of $1,000,000. The teams will start out in groups of four. The first and second place teams from the group stage will compete in a knockout round. There will be some modified rules and regulations for the tournament. These have been created to ensure that the games promote attacking soccer and efficiency, while remaining high intensity.
The games will be played on smaller fields, measuring 65 yards long by 45 yards wide. The goals themselves will also be smaller than regulation. Substitutions will be permitted to be made at any time. There are no offsides and the goalkeepers will only have six seconds to release a ball after they pick it up. The games will consist of two twenty-minute halves. There will be a single two-minute halftime break.
After 40 minutes, the teams will enter Target Score Time, and whoever reaches the Target Score first AFTER the undetermined period of time will be the winner. This Target Score will be one more goal than whatever the leading team had at the end of the 40 minute time period. To ensure that the game doesn’t drag on indefinitely, after the first five minutes of Target Score Time, one player from each team will be taken off the pitch. Essentially, after five minutes, you would have a 6 v 6 game. After another five minutes, you’d be looking at a 5 v 5 game. This would continue until you potentially had a 1 v 1 scenario.
This tournament is going to be unlike any the soccer world has ever seen before. The rules are different. The procedures are different. And the teams… are made up of a wild collection of groups. TST utilized an open-entry process so existing teams, or groups of players from anywhere around the world would be able to compete. TST received over 400 applicants for their 32-team field. There are several well-known top level teams that will be sending players and/or mixes of players and academy players to field teams.
Premier League club West Ham United will be hosting a team led by fan favorites Marlon Harewood and Matt Jarvis. A few former Hammers will also join their roster. Wolverhampton, another English Premier League club will also be playing in the inaugural TST games. Borussia Dortmund, Liga MX’s Club Necaxa and even Wrexham AFC (club made famous by Ryan Reynolds and Rob McElhenny will be represented.
This tournament isn’t restricted to top-tier players from large clubs. It is open to all players. Some teams are all men. Some are co-ed. There is at least one that is all women. One group is being lead by a truck driver from Kentucky.
This will be a non-traditional soccer tournament with different rules, procedures and a collection of squads comprised of legends, professionals, up-and-coming talents, amateurs, viral street sensations and everyone in-between.
You can learn more about the Tournament, as well as how you can purchase tickets at https://thetournament.com/tst/
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