West Coast FC Stays In Surf Nation But Reclaims Original Name
Sometimes a name doesn’t take. Rebranding can be tricky … There can be too much real pride associated with the original brand or a deeper legacy than wasn’t easily discerned from the surface — whatever the reasons, while it is usually successful, like when BackRub became Google (yes, the search engine wasn’t originally called Google in 1996) — it sometimes doesn’t work …
In the youth soccer landscape, the rebranding of youth soccer clubs happens all the time. For example, the Surf affiliate partnership program has an estimated twenty-five youth soccer clubs across America proudly wearing the Surf crest on their jersey. Usually, a rebrand provides added marketability and strength. Only rarely does the rebrand unwind but that is what has happened with Orange County Surf SC.
Originally, Orange County Surf was known as the West Coast Futbol Club (WCFC) — a club with a vibrant legacy and a record of success in the Elite Clubs National League (ECNL). In fact, West Coast FC was an ardent competitor and the Orange County youth soccer club’s accomplishments rivaled many of San Diego Surf SC‘s, earning four US Youth Soccer National Championships as well as one ECNL National Championships.
When the partnering of these two powerhouses, Surf SC has earned 11 National Championships, was announced for the 2018/19 season, it was heralded as a major change in the Southern California youth soccer landscape. It was a major boost for the Surf branding — but the name change, while initially well received, never really reached its ultimate goal or any deep pride of adoption.
This week, West Coast FC has relaunched with a new logo to celebrate reclaiming its rich heritage and name.
Surf Cup Sports and West Coast FC Redefine Partnership in Southern California
Working together for the good of the game, Surf Cup Sports and West Coast FC have created an intelligent and innovative solution to the branding issue — and is pioneering a new partnership in which the Orange County club will reclaim its original name while remaining a vital part of Surf Nation.
West Coast Coaches, Players, and Parents were proud of being part of West Coast FC
Surf Nation is a nationwide community of nearly mission-driven organizations nationwide working together to create the “Best of the Best” experiences and opportunities for youth soccer players. For over 43 years, Surf has pioneered the ‘Best of the Best’ in youth soccer and establishing a high benchmark for player development. With over $7 million in charitable donations, Surf Cup Sports has positively impacted the youth soccer landscape for decades. The organization has recently announced a similar partnership with Match Fit Academy, a nationally prominent club in New Jersey which will retain its club name while becoming the co-creator of New Jersey Surf.
“West Coast FC is excited to be part of this innovative new partnership with Surf,” said Higgins. “We will be building on the strength of both SurfNation and the West Coast brand.”
West Coast FC returns immediately to being an independent club under the leadership of its Board of Directors and General Manager Mike Higgins. With over 900 youth soccer players, the goal of the West Coast coaching staff is to be an empowering force building up all of its players.
“The net result will be more experiences and opportunities for our West Coast players.”Mike Higgins, General Manager of West Coast FC
“We believe there is outstanding strength in the Surf brand but we don’t think Surf is the only important brand,” said Brian Enge, CEO of Surf Cup Sports. “West Coast has a strong brand heritage as well and we are proud to stand shoulder to shoulder with them with the goal of improving SurfNation and creating the best experiences and opportunities for the kids.”
Every West Coast FC youth soccer player will wear a Surf Nation patch.
“I think this is great for our players. Our players will receive all the benefits that Surf has to offer, plus enjoy the ability to be part of the history of our great club, West Coast FC,” said Platini Soaf, Director of Coaching and the Development Academy at West Coast FC. Platini has helped many players reach their goals, including Rachel Van Hollebeke who played on our U.S. Soccer Women’s National Team and for the Portland Thorns FC. After hanging up her pro cleats, she has become a doctor.
There are many exciting opportunities ahead for our West Coast players.Platini Soaf, Director of Coaching and the Development Academy at West Coast FC
In the last two decades, Platini has helped negotiated tens of millions of dollars in college scholarships for West Coast players.
West Coast FC will still retain all the benefits of the Surf Nation Community and its administrative and marketing tools. All West Coast FC players will have access to the Surf Select Program, an exclusive nationwide player identification, and development program within Surf Nation. 2020 Surf Select opportunities for WCFC athletes include the Northern Ireland Super Cup, a West Coast Select Camp and a Surf Select team placement in Surf Cup.
“I am excited to see the West Coast FC and Surf relationship continue to evolve and grow stronger. “Oliver Wyss, founding member of West Coast FC and President / GM of the USL’s Orange County Soccer Club
“Surf has always been a leader in youth soccer,” said Enge. “Establishing strategic partnerships with a national powerhouse clubs like West Coast Futbol Club is the next evolution in our drive to bring mission-aligned organizations into a single community working together to improve youth sports for all our players.”
San Clemente Surf, led by Chris Murry, and Orange County Surf – North, led by Eddie Carrillo will remain as independent clubs under the Surf brand.
“We believe the SoCal soccer landscape is stronger with both the Surf and West Coast brands.”Brian Enge, CEO of Surf Cup Sports
“I am excited to see the West Coast FC and Surf relationship continue to develop. We feel that along with what Surf Nation provides for our players, we will be able to expand and offer exciting opportunities for all our athletes,” said Oliver Wyss founding member of West Coast FC and current President of Soccer and GM of the USL’s Orange County Soccer Club.