History of Soccer on the Beach and Major Beach Soccer
The early 90’s beach soccer roots in Florida
Beach soccer was imported to the United Sates from Brazil in the early 1990s when Peter Mellor, USL National Technical Director and former Premier League goalkeeper (Fulham and Portsmouth), staged the first beach soccer tournament in the United States at Clearwater, Florida in 1991. He was inspired after visiting Rio de Janeiro and watching beach soccer on Copacabana in the 1980s, and decided to bring the new sport to North America to enhance youth soccer skills.
In the summer of 1993 – working closely with the English sports brand Umbro – Mellor founded Soccer on the Beach Enterprises and held a pro beach soccer event at Miami’s South Beach. Since then, Mellor has continually and successfully carried the torch for beach soccer in the United States.
In 2010, Mellor entered a partnership with United Soccer Leagues (USL) and the Major Beach Soccer Series was brought to life. The three Soccer on the Beach Events (Daytona Beach, Clearwater Beach and Fort Myers Beach) are now operated under the USL Major Beach Soccer umbrella, growing in quality, quantity and participants.
In 2011, USL and Major Beach Soccer adopted the FIFA laws of the game. Following the adoption of FIFA laws of the game, MBS in partner with Soccer In The Sand hosted the inaugural MBS National Championship in Clearwater Beach; crowning for the first time in North America, a Beach Soccer Champion. In conjunction with the MBS National Championship, USL and US Soccer hosted the first-ever FIFA Beach Soccer Coaching and Referee symposium held in North America; furthering MBS’ commitment to coaching, referee and player education and development.