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SmallWorld Future – Where We’re Headed

Most of SmallWorld Soccer’s posts are about others. This blog’s heart is in serving clubs, leagues, and organizations around the lower-league soccer community. In contrast, this particular post will focus on SmallWorld itself and where it’s headed in the near future.

Because, you know, narcissism is the new cool thing that the youths are into.

Before I proceed with what’s to come, let me take you back to where SmallWorld came from.

In August of the Year of our Lord 2019, I created SmallWorld Soccer on a whim from a crazy idea I had. I had big ambitions with this dream: a blog that wouldn’t just talk about lower-league soccer, but would contribute something to it.

My ambitions were large, but my expectations were little to none. I assumed no one would really read my work. I figured that no one actually cared about American soccer, much less in the lower tiers.

I haven’t exactly seen ridiculous levels of viewership, but I was definitely wrong in believing there was no one else out there who’s passionate about our flavor of soccer. Soccer that represents communities, soccer that helps unite people, soccer that enriches the lives of those it touches.

Having been part-time employed with a company that sent me to matches across Georgia in the NPSL, all the USL leagues, the WPSL, and more, I thought I knew what the lower-league soccer community is like. But after this journey through research, networking, and quite a few Twitter GIFs, I’m coming to realize that this is a truly special little corner of the Internet.

And SmallWorld is actually influencing it. We’ve posted things that other clubs have gained exposure and excitement from. We’ve been involved with and facilitated actually relevant conversations about lower-league soccer. We’ve persisted in using a plural pronoun for ourselves even though it’s definitely just Danny running this thing.

Simply put, SmallWorld has actually meant something to somebody. People have read it. People acknolwedge its existence, and I really believe it’s helped people in the community, if only on a very small scale.

This actually blows my mind. But despite my disbelief, it’s actually true.

And for that reason, SmallWorld Soccer is going to continue.

I honestly didn’t think it would. I started it for a school assignment and expected to shut it down after this semester ends. I figured it would come into existence, be read by my mom and three other people, and then just disappear.

But now that I’ve seen the potential of SmallWorld, I can’t let it die. I have to keep this passion project running if only for the sake of those who have been positively affected by it.

With that said, it’s going to look a little different at SmallWorld now that the semester is coming to a close. Here’s a general timeline of what things (probably) will look like:

There are some cool things in the works as I write this, so be on the lookout later this month for some exciting new features.

In December, SmallWorld might take a bit of a hiatus. As previously mentioned, I’m totally on my own with this, and December will mostly be a period of rest for me. That isn’t to say I won’t put anything out if something comes up and I feel compelled to write about it, but posts will be sparse.

In January, I imagine there won’t be a whole lot of news to report in most of the leagues SmallWorld covers. I will, however, try to get some more written and continue to be active on SmallWorld Social. I’ll also probably be gearing up and generating some interest around my plan for after January…

During the spring months, I’ll be relocating semi-permanently to Costa Rica. While there, I’ll definitely be following lower-league soccer in America like I normally would, but I think I’m going to try something different with SmallWorld while I’m abroad.

I’m going to take my opportunity in a foreign country to try and see as much soccer as possible. During this adventure, I’m going to document what I see in Costa Rica’s Liga FPD that could potentially be replicated back stateside. I’ll try to get supporter opinions on the state of soccer in Costa Rica, how the structure of the league looks from my outsider’s perspective, and how promotion/relegation affects a league that’s our direct competition right now in CONCACAF Champions League (and definitely shouldn’t be).

Hopefully, it’ll be eye-opening for people on all sides of the debate over what USSF should do with their league structure. Having a fellow CONCACAF nation to compare ourselves to might provide a good view of what can be changed in our own sphere of soccer.

If you haven’t seen it yet, I posted a comparison between the two leagues that makes a good case for following the Liga FPD closely as American soccer fans.

Anyway, that’s my idea for the springtime. I’m definitely going to need to know if there’s support or interest behind that, though, so please tell me if you think that’s actually a good idea that you and the community as a whole would read.

After the spring, I’ll be back stateside just in time for things to start flourishing in SmallWorld’s more commonly-covered leagues like USL2 and the NPSL. I’ll likely cover north Georgia’s lower-league teams in particular, so if any Georgia lower-league clubs are especially looking for coverage, let me know!

After that, who the heck knows what’s coming. But for the foreseeable future, that’s what SmallWorld will look like. If anyone has other ideas as to what they’d like to see SmallWorld look like in the near future, throw them my way on SmallWorld Social, by email at danny.smallworldsoccer@gmail.com, or in the comments of this blog itself.

Again, I really need to know if these ideas will be worth pursuing and will be beneficial to the community, so be sure to communicate your thoughts with me. They’re all appreciated!

Thank you to everyone who’s been reading, following on social media, and doing your thing in the lower-league soccer world. You inspire me, you make me better, and you make SmallWorld Soccer worth every bit of effort I’ve put into it.

Watch local soccer, unify those around you, and seek out diversity!

Blessings,

Danny

By danny kotula

danny kotula is an aspiring sports writer and play-by-play commentator. unfortunately, he is not good at either one. his interests include watching soccer and listening to obscure music genres, and those aren’t even his most boring ones. he was born in Tacoma, Washington but has called South Carolina, North Carolina, Georgia, Texas, California, Georgia, and Costa Rica home over the course of his life. he generally knows where to put a comma, which is by far his most redeeming quality. he is writing this in third person as if he were famous enough for someone to write him a biography, but don’t be fooled. he’s not famous.

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