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Athens United

Club History

Athens United Soccer Association (AUSA) is a dedicated organization with the primary goal of promoting and uniting the sport of soccer within the Athens community and its surrounding areas. Established in 1986 through the merger of two rival entities, Applejacks and Athens International, AUSA has since become the sole soccer-focused organization in the region.

The origins of AUSA can be traced back to the formation of the Applejacks in around 1972. As a response to the need for older players and those seeking heightened competition to have an alternative to the Athens Parks and Recreation Department's soccer teams, the Applejacks emerged. Around the same time, Athens International was established in 1984, further diversifying soccer opportunities in the area.


The pivotal moment came in 1986 when Applejacks and Athens International recognized the mutual benefits of collaboration over competition. Thus, Athens United Soccer Association was born, reflecting their joint effort to enhance soccer within the community.


During its early years, AUSA faced challenges in securing suitable playing facilities. Games were held wherever flat expanses of land could be found, with the quality of grass being a secondary concern. However, the organization's partnership with the Athens/Clarke County Recreation Department led to significant progress. In 1992, with funding from the Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax (SPLOST) and a $5000 donation from AUSA, the construction of soccer fields at the Holland Youth Sports Complex was initiated. This undertaking required substantial efforts from league members, parents, coaches, and even players who dedicated weekends to clearing rocks and preparing the fields for grass. The collective "sweat equity" invested in this endeavor finally provided AUSA with a sense of home and some of the finest soccer facilities in the state of Georgia.


AUSA operates primarily through the dedication of volunteers, with only a small number of paid coaches. The organization's financial sustainability is achieved through registration fees, concession sales, donations, and revenue generated from tournaments. Unlike being funded by tax dollars, AUSA's operational budget is sourced from these avenues.


Today, AUSA stands as a testament to the power of collaboration, perseverance, and community involvement. The Holland Youth Sports Complex has garnered acclaim from teams nationwide, and AUSA continues to foster a vibrant soccer community in Athens and its neighboring regions.

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