USA Youth Soccer Rules
(FIFA RULES APPLY IF NOT MODIFIED WITHIN)
NUMBER OF PLAYERS: U6 & U8 four field players at one time. U10 & up six field players at one time. There are no goal keepers. Substitutes may occur at any dead ball situation, but players must get coaches/referees attention and enter and exit at the half field mark.
EQUIPMENT: All players must wear shin guards. Any player without shin guards will not be allowed to play. Teams are responsible for providing game balls. Preferred Ball Size for U6= #3, U8-U12= #4.
GOAL BOX: The goal circle in front of the goal. No player may touch the ball within the goal box, however any player may move through the goal box. Any part of the ball or player’s body on the line is considered in the goal box; the player is an extension of the box. If a defender touches the ball within the goal box, a penalty kick is awarded to the offensive team. If an offensive player touches the ball within the goal box, regardless of which team touched it last, a goal kick is awarded to the defensive team.
GAME DURATION: The U6 & U8 age groups game shall consist of two 12 minute halves separated by a two minute halftime period. The U10 & Up age group game shall consist of two 20 minute halves separated by a two minute halftime period. Games tied after regulation play shall end in a tie.
GOAL SCORING: A goal may be scored from a touch on the offensive half on the playing field. This includes corner kicks and free kicks.
NO OFFSIDES (NO CAMPING OUT AT THE GOAL) AND NO SLIDE TACKLING
FIVE YARD RULE: In all dead ball situations, defending players must stand at least five yards away from the ball. If the defensive player’s goal area is closer then five yards, the ball shall be placed five yards from the goal area in line with the place of the penalty.
KICK-INS: Ages U6 –U8 shall kick the ball into play from the sideline.
THROW-INS: Ages U10 & up shall throw the ball into play from the sideline.
INDIRECT KICKS: All dead ball kicks (kick-ins, free kicks, kick-offs) are indirect with exception to corner and penalty kicks.
GOAL KICKS: May be taken from any point on the end line, and not in the goal box area.
KICK OFF: May be taken in any direction.
PENALTY KICKS: Shall be awarded if, in the referee’s opinion, a scoring opportunity was nullified by the infraction. It is a direct kick taken from the top of the center circle on the offensive side of the midfield line with all other players behind the midfield line. If a goal is not scored, the defense obtains possession with a goal kick. Penalty kicks are not live balls.
PLAYER EJECTION (YELLOW/RED CARD): Referees have the right to eject a player from the game for continual disobedience or as a result of an incident that warrants sending the player off.
SPORTSMANSHIP: Players, coaches and spectators are expected to act in the nature of good sportsmanship at all times. Abuse of the referees verbal or otherwise will not be tolerated.