Friday has come again, which means a slow work day for me and a new article for you to read. Before you get into this one, I would recommend reading 'Part 1,' the original One League To Rule Team All article. There have been some fascinating changes for the PDL and NPSL, both in terms of cost and number of teams. It will make for a great place to start before you dive into what's ahead, providing context for what you are about to read.
If you have already read 'Part 1,' good job! You've been with AP for the long haul! Go ahead and read on, faithful follower.
On Sunday, as I attempted to do a bit of work that needed finishing, I used the wonders of browser tabs to also watch live coverage of Bearfight FC’s match against Lower Bucks County United in their first match in their home city of Wilmington, DE (courtesy of the good people at Non League America).
The fact that I was watching an amateur friendly football match from the United States at that time at a weekend probably says much more about my social life than I care to admit, but after finding out that a live YouTube stream would be up and running I just had to catch some of the game.
First attempts at watching the feed were not overly successful with what seemed to be tests carried out in the (phone) camera person’s car. But when I returned a little later it was working properly and I connected just in time for a Bearfight equaliser. I know that it was a Bearfight goal as the person filming the match told me. The stream itself was not the greatest quality in the world – but that didn’t matter.
Watching football through a phone camera on the other side of the world is never going to be HD standard and, although I would have loved to watch the match in person, I didn’t really care that I couldn’t always make out what was happening. One of the main reasons why I have been so interested in clubs like Bearfight FC is their whole ethos. The idea that “we should stream the match live” is the important factor here.
I watch non-league football in the UK and don’t kid myself that it is the best football on offer. But I do know that I may well see something so amazing – good or bad – that it will make up for all the terrible football on show. I also appreciate that there are people invested enough to keep clubs of limited stature going – and the fans that make it possible.
It seems to be a very exciting time for the equivalent of non-league football in America (although with the set up over there the term doesn’t really work). Small clubs, formed by football fans promoting the sport and community involvement is what makes what they are doing so important.
I’m not going to lie and say the main thing that initially attracted me to the club wasn’t their frankly awesome name. But discovering more about the people behind the scenes – and their fans - has been immensely worthwhile.
Bearfight ended up drawing 3-3 on Sunday and I look forward to future live streaming of games. I might have to miss out on the post-match tacos and beer but as long as the coverage is there I will be too.
Hello everyone! Today is a special day, and I want to get straight to it. I'm pleased to announce that AP is launching a new platform for you to find all the soccer related content you could ever want. The AP Podcast Network.
Right now, we are in Phase One of this project, as you'll see by clicking Here. We have several exciting partners covering the entire scope of soccer in the United States, and are hoping to make it easier for people who are interested to start a podcast and have a built in network of eager listeners. Phase Two will be later this year, and you'll get to see those changes this summer as things are finalized and rolled out to you, the breathless public.
I am also working on creating some more exclusive content for people looking for help and or advice in running/starting a team. Things like budget plans, marketing and membership ideas and such. Also, to keep the site up and running, AP will be starting a Patreon account. Before you start rolling your eyes and dismiss the idea, if 100 readers give $1 a month, I'll be able to keep the site live as it's own domain for a long, long time.
Lastly, thanks for being a part of this journey. Who would have thought a blog with no readers when it started would get this far? And it's all thanks to you. Hope you enjoy the new phase of the ride.
Today's interview is brought to you by LeagueApps. League Apps is your one stop shop for streamlining your day to day activities at the club and league level. They have multiple options based on your needs, including one that's free! Visit LeagueApps.com to find out more and see what they can do to make running your club and league easier.
Hello AP readers! I've got a real treat for you today. This aritcle is the first from one of our new writers, Dan Roberts! If you missed it last month, and now last year, you can read a little about Dan and what he's going to be bringing to AP by Clicking Here. I hope you enjoy his writing and unique perspective on the world of soccer. Check it out.