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UPSL VS MWPL

Updated: Sep 2, 2022



This has been a question asked of the Michigan Soccer Network countless times during the 2022 Summer Season and I am going to give you my opinion... During the summer 2022 the Michigan Soccer Network covered over 57 games and of those 57, 17 were UPSL and 14 were MWPL games. So to say we had a plenty of opportunity to study both leagues from the teams, players, coaches, venues and fan bases would be an understatement.


UPSL

The United Premier Soccer League was founded in 2011 and at the time of this article being written is the largest and most competitive league in North America. The league has over 400 clubs nationwide and 255 clubs competing for 32 places in the National Playoff. They offer a spring season and a fall season. The Michigan Soccer Network covers the MIDWEST EAST DIVISION, made up of 10 teams from all over Michigan.

The Final USPL standings from the Spring 2022 Season

Detroit United has been the strongest team in the UPSL for the past 3 seasons finishing atop the table twice and playing in all 3 MIDWEST EAST FINALS with a 1-2 record. Cedars FC won the Midwest East Final this summer beating Detroit United in PKS, and have been right there at the top of the table the past 3 seasons.



RATINGS OF THE UPSL 1-5

Here is how I would rate the UPSL based on our experience as a broadcast team covering these games.


TEAMS (4): The teams for the most part are competitive and are run like most amateur teams in the United States. Finding consistent rosters, player who are able to play is the hardest challenge. Inter Detroit and Cedars FC had teams in both the UPSL and MWPL.


PLAYERS (4): The players are sound soccer players coming mostly from D1, D2, D3 and NAIA colleges with a few players who played up from their local club teams.


COACHES (3): Only one or two coaches are current college coaches, while the rest of the coaches in the UPSL come from varying backgrounds and experiences.


STADIUMS (3): Most of these teams play their home games at local High School stadiums. For most of the teams, they had a single home this season, while a few bounced around looking for a home due to field availability. ALIANZA FC plays their home games at THE OLD BALL PARK in Corktown and its a great place to play a game.


FAN BASES (2): Only one program has a true fanbase right not and thats ALIANZA FC, that is able to draw 500 plus fans a game at their location. The rest of the league might see a few people to a few hundred at any give time


OVERALL RANKING (3.2) The UPSL is a great option for any player looking to get competitive soccer during the spring and fall. The upside is a chance to compete for a national championship, the downside is your team might not have the funds to compete for that championship as we have seen the last two summers teams having to forfeit due to travel expenses for the games in the round of 32 and beyond.



MWPL

The Midwest Premier League was founded in 2020 and at the time of this article being written has only 27 teams made up of three divisions, the west, east and south. The MWPL is a regional soccer league that is run by its members. The Michigan Soccer Network covers the EAST DIVISION, made up of 11 teams from all over Michigan.

The Final MWPL 2022 STANDINGS

Inter Detroit and Lansing Common fought until their very last match with Inter Detroit coming away with a 3-2 win over Lansing Common on July 23 in front of 800 fans in Lansing. A record crowd for Lansing Common.



RATINGS OF THE MWPL 1-5

Here is how I would rate the MWPL based on our experience as a broadcast team covering these games.


TEAMS (4): The teams for the most part are competitive and are run like most amateur teams in the United States. Finding consistent rosters, player who are able to play is the hardest challenge. Inter Detroit and Cedars FC had teams in both the MWPL and UPSL


PLAYERS (4): The players are sound soccer players coming mostly from D1, D2, D3 and NAIA colleges with a few players who played up from their local club teams.


COACHES (3): Only one or two coaches are current college coaches, while the rest of the coaches in the MWPL come from varying backgrounds and experiences.


STADIUMS (4): Most of these teams play their home games at local High School stadiums. All of the teams had a single home, even one out in the middle of nowhere.


FAN BASES (4): Hands down the better fan bases come from the MWPL, Thebranch for Lansing Common is remarkable, as they tailgate at home and away games. They tune into other matches to root on a team to beat another in order to help them in the table, Livonia FC has a strong fanbase that travels and is very active during games.


OVERALL RANKING (3.8) The MWPL is a great option for any player looking to get competitive soccer during the summer. The season runs from May to July and each team in the east division gets 10 games. There is no current playoff structure, but that might change in the future.



THE BOTTOM LINE

On the field you might not tell a big difference between these two leagues, both offer a great product for young men looking to play competitive soccer during the summer months. Pick where you feel comfortable, can be challenged and grow as an athlete.





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