The North American Soccer League will look very different this season than it did in 1982. Three of the league's franchises have folded and one club, Team America, has been added.

The 12 teams have been split into three divisions (Southern, Eastern, Western), with each team playing divisional rivals twice at home and twice on the road. Nondivisional rivals will be played once at home and once on the road.

In addition, three franchises--Chicago, Golden Bay and San Diego--are competing in the Major Indoor Soccer League and will not begin their outdoor seasons until May 18, three weeks later than other NASL clubs.

The playoffs are set to begin Sept. 5. Eight teams (the division winners and five wild-card teams, based upon total points) will compete for a berth in Soccer Bowl 83, scheduled for Oct. 1 in Vancouver's B.C. Palace. SOUTHERN DIVISION Team America

1982 Record: First season

Coach: Alkis Panagoulias

Analysis: Although it lacks established stars, Team America is made up of experienced players and will be competitive. The defense is excellent, with goalkeepers Paul Hammond (1.29 goals-against average, a league-high nine shutouts) and Arnie Mausser (2.47 GAA) and defenders Jeff Durgan, Dan Canter and Bruce Savage. The midfield lacks scoring punch, but forwards Tony Crescitelli (seven goals), Chico Borja (five) and Pedro DeBrito (two) can finish. The expected addition of some MISL players in May should fill any holes. Fort Lauderdale Strikers

1982 Record: 18-14

Coach: David Chadwick

Analysis: The Strikers are well-stocked at forward and in the midfield, but first-year coach Chadwick lost half his defense to Team America. Forward Branko Segota (12 goals, 13 assists), possibly the most talented striker in the league, will team with Brian Kidd and Steve Wegerle in a 4-4-3 offense, and midfielders Teofilo Cubillas and Ray Hudson are reliable. Goalkeeper Jan van Beveren (2.25 goals against average) is coming off a poor season and will need support on the back line. Tulsa Roughnecks

1982 Record: 16-16

Coach: Terry Hennessey

Analysis: Laurie Abrahams equaled his career-high with 17 goals last season, but will need help up front from Barry Wallace (eight) and new acquisitions Thompson Usiyan (10 goals, 30 points) and Zequinha (four) to be effective. In the midfield, Italian international Pasqualle Fuccillo, bought from the English first division, is a brilliant passer. Terry Moore leads the defense and goalkeeper Winston DuBose (1.67 GAA, a career-high nine shutouts) is coming off his best season since 1980. Tampa Bay Rowdies

1982 Record: 12-20

Coach: Al Miller

Analysis: Tampa Bay lost three players to Team America and will be hard-pressed to improve last year's disappointing record. Luis Fernando (16 goals) and Tatu (seven) are the only offensive threats, and midfielder Wes McLeod (two goals, six assists) had a sub-par year. Mike Connell and Gregg Thompson, the No. 1 draft choice from Indiana are solid defensively, but goalkeeper Jurgen Stars (2.43 GAA) played far below his 1981 form. EASTERN DIVISION New York Cosmos

1982 Record: 23-9

Coach: Julio Mazzei

Analysis: The Cosmos have appeared in three straight Soccer Bowls but age may be catching up with them. Giorgio Chinaglia (a league-leading 20 goals and 55 points) is 36 and may quit after this season; sweeper Franz Beckenbauer, 37, was lured out of a two-year retirement. Midfielder Vladislav Bogicevic, 33, had 24 assists and goalie Hubert Birkenmeier, 34, finished with a 1.55 GAA and four shutouts. Forwards Steve Moyers (13 goals) and Roberto Cabanas (seven), midfielder Julio Cesar Romero and defender Darryl Gee, all under 27, are the team's future. Montreal Manic

1982 Record: 19-13

Coach: Andy Lynch

Analysis: The Manic are scheduled to become Team Canada in 1984 and will likely phase out non-Canadian players as the season progresses. Englishman Alan Willey (15 goals, 37 points) is one of the league's premier forwards, and will team up front with Dragan Vujovic (eight goals). Ireland's Brian Quinn (12 assists) is the top play maker, but Montreal is weak defensively and Algerian World Cup star Medhi Cerbah will face a lot of shots in goal. Toronto Blizzard

1982 Record: 17-15

Coach: Bob Houghton

Analysis: Toronto's strength is its midfield, where Ace Ntsoelengoe (14 goals, 12 assists) is still the league's best creator. Ntsoelengoe will work with newly acquired Arno Steffenhagen (13 goals), Derek Spalding and Swedish international Conny Karlsson, and forward Neill Roberts (17 goals) will get help up front from Robert Bettega, bought from Juventus of the Italian first division. Goalkeeper Jan Moeller (1.37 GAA, seven shutouts) is young and quick. Chicago Sting

1982 Record: 13-19

Coach: Willy Roy

Analysis: Chicago played poorly outdoors in 1982, but excellent indoor play this season shows the Sting may have regained its 1981 Soccer Bowl form. Ricardo Alonso and Karl-Heinz Granitza scored 21 and 20 goals, respectively, but Tim Twellman and Charlie Fajkus must score more to keep defensive pressure off the forwards. Midfielder Pato Margetic (nine assists) has recovered from injuries that slowed him in 1982. Bret Hall leads the defense. Victor Nogueira (1.25 GAA) and Dieter Ferner (2.02) will split time in goal. WESTERN DIVISION Golden Bay Earthquakes

1982 Record: 13-19

Coach: Dragan Popovic

Analysis: Golden Bay's success depends upon Steve Zungul's ability to adapt to the outdoor game. The MISL's all-time leading scorer with 412 goals, Zungul, 29, has not played outdoors since coming to the United States in 1978. He will team at forward with Godfrey Ingram (17 goals) and Chris Dangerfield (nine). Midfielder Leonardo Cuellar has missed the last two seasons with injuries and must play effectively for Golden Bay's offense to work. In goal, Bill Irwin (1.32 GAA), Mike Hewitt (1.82) and Bob Rigby will battle for the starting job. Vancouver Whitecaps

1982 Record: 20-12

Coach: John Giles

Analysis: The Whitecaps are strong up the middle, and improved themselves further with the off-season acquisitions of midfielders Mike Sweeney, Fran O'Brien and Dutch international Franz Thijssen, England's 1981 player of the year. Dave Watson, bought from the English first division, will team with veteran Bob Lenarduzzi on defense. Goalkeeper Tino Lettieri (1.23 GAA) led the league last season. Forwards Peter Lorimer and Carl Valentine (10 goals apiece) are consistent. San Diego Sockers

1982 Record: 19-13

Coach: Ron Newman

Analysis: San Diego gets balanced scoring from its forwards and midfielders, but is weak defensively. Forwards Lorenz Hilkes (11 goals, 13 assists) and Ade Coker (13, nine) team well and the midfield with Julie Veee (six, 16), Kaz Deyna (10, six) and Vidal Fernandez (five, nine) will remain strong. Defenders Gert Wieczorkowski and Ty Keough need support and goalie Volkmar Gross (1.41 GAA, six shutouts) is 35. Seattle Sounders

1982 Record: 18-14

Coach: Laurie Calloway

Analysis: A Soccer Bowl finalist in 1982, Seattle could be even stronger if forward Roger Davies can return to his 1981 MVP form after missing much of last year with injuries. Forwards Pete Ward (18 goals, league MVP) and Mark Peterson (17 goals) picked up the scoring slack, and midfielder Steve Daley set a team record with 18 assists. Jeff Stock and Ray Evans lead the defense, and goalkeeper Joe Corrigan, acquired from the English first division, is big and quick.