Do Youth Soccer Clubs Make Money?

Youth soccer clubs have been around for years.  Many of us grew up playing in a youth club of some sort. We paid our fees and played with our friends.  Then, we had to buy our uniforms and travel to regional tournaments.  And then you start to wonder – where does that money go?  Do youth soccer clubs make a profit?  Does it go to a city or county for a fee? 

Youth soccer clubs do make money. There are a few ways that they make money, and money is required to make a club run for various reasons.  The money is divided up into a few different areas and is essential to run the club.    Most clubs, if they are running properly, do make a profit.  However, some clubs are strictly non-profit, so it depends on how the club is set up.

Youth soccer clubs can be a big part of our local communities and serve as a fun, wholesome outlet for kids today.  They bring people together, encourage fitness, have fundraisers, and often, youth clubs will sponsor community events and make donations to local charities.  Although we pay a small fee for the club, they are not only good for the soccer players involved, they are great assets to our communities

How Do Youth Soccer Clubs Make Money?

Youth soccer clubs need money to keep themselves running – money to pay for uniforms, general operating fees, marketing costs, etc.  Here are a few ways that youth clubs make money so they can continue to function:

  • Dues – most clubs (unless they are non-profit) will require a fee (dues or club fee), and it is usually a flat rate based on age range or where you live.
  • Soccer Camps –  many clubs will offer soccer camps in the offseason as a money maker
  • Fundraisers – this can be a wide range of items
    • Bake-sales 
    • A Run (like a 5k or a fun run) – usually needs a sponsor to enter, or there is an entry fee
    • Exhibitions
    • Raffles
    • Carwashes 
  • Taking donations – either in person or crowdfunding
  • Selling merchandise for the team
  • Offering private lessons

These are just some of the ways that youth clubs make money.  Sometimes at your local grocery or corner store, you will also see a donation cup where you can leave your change to support, for example, a team with an upcoming out of town tournament.  Most of the money they make goes back into operating costs, and profit is handled separately.

Is it Easy for Youth Soccer Clubs to Make Money?

Even with the many ways that youth clubs can make money, it is not necessarily easy for them to do so.  Yes, they sometimes make a profit, but that is not without a lot of work.  Each event that they put on, or host, takes time and money to create and organize.  

It takes a lot of time and manpower to put on an event, and if there is not a good turnout, a youth soccer club risks losing all the money they’ve spent to make it possible.  

As stated previously, there are a ton of options for youth soccer clubs to make money.  Some options to make money will be much easier than others.  

For example, a soccer camp or car wash will be much easier to coordinate but may not bring as much money in as a larger, more inclusive event like a ‘fun run’ or a spiritwear sale.  So, the organization, and even the location of the club, will determine the different options and how economical it will be for them to create the revenue they are looking for.  

How Do Youth Sports Clubs Spend the Money They Make?

The money that the clubs make is spent in a variety of ways.  There are many parts to a club that make it function.  Here are a few areas that the money will go into:

  • Uniforms
  • Travel – including transportation and lodging for away games or tournaments
  • Insurance
  • Salaries for coaches and any team staff
  • Equipment
  • Marketing

So, aside from daily operation, there are plenty of things that pop up.  A well-run club will maintain a cushion for anything unforeseen.  There are many costs that are associated with operating a club. 

Do Youth Soccer Club Coaches get Paid?

The specific organization will determine if the coach is paid or not. Some organizations are non-profit, so coaches do strictly volunteer work.  Other youth soccer clubs will have paid coaches.  Generally, the more competitive a club is, the more likely the club will be to have paid coaches.  

The salary of a coach will also vary depending on the type of league and the experience of the coach.  There are different skill levels and location levels in soccer.  The different levels in basic terms are Local, State, Regional, and National.  Depending on which category you are looking at, the salaries for coaches will vary.  Within a club, the highest level teams (National) will likely have the highest paid coaches.

Is the Money Youth Soccer Clubs Make taxable?

This is a two-fold answer.  Yes and no.  It all depends on the club and if it is a non-profit club or a for-profit club.  

  • Non-profit youth soccer clubs are not in it for capital gain, so they are able to be tax-exempt since they do not make a profit.  
  • For-profit youth soccer clubs are taxable unless they have a special circumstance.  Up to 75% of youth sports clubs do qualify for an exemption under non-profit organizations.  

Both non-profit and for-profit organizations must accordingly file with the IRS.  Failure to do so will result in fines – even if they are a volunteer-based organization.  

Many youth soccer clubs fail to apply for their exemption with the IRS, so they later end up with fines.  One of the benefits of an organization being tax-exempt is that donations from individuals or businesses can be written off on their end as well.

So, while it is dependent upon each organization individually, roughly 75% of youth sports organizations are tax-exempt if all documents are submitted and approved by the IRS. 

How Much Does It Cost to Be Part of a Youth Soccer Club?

According to a study, the annual average that is paid for a youth soccer club is between $0 (on the low end) and $9,500 (on the max end).  Again, this will vary by leagues, skill levels, and even locations.  There are many factors, but most clubs will either require an annual fee or a monthly fee.  

On average, for the fees/dues alone, most people will be paying between $2,000 and $5,000 annually.  Those fees will usually cover coaching fees, uniforms, league fees, tournament fees and general administrative expenses. Depending on the league, you can also be looking at many out-of-pocket expenses as well, like travel and safety equipment.  A lot of families look at it as an investment in the hope that it will be recovered in the long run. 

If you’re interested in club soccer, take a look at How to Pick the Right Club and Coach.


Youth sports clubs, like other organizations, need money to operate daily.  Depending on the type of club, they may make a profit or they may be non-profit.  Regardless, there are many expenses associated with running a club.  

Likewise, there are plenty of ways for clubs to raise money.  Ultimately, youth sports is a 15.3-billion-dollar industry and is a  huge contributor to the economy – both locally and globally.

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