Lassen Youth Soccer League

U8 Soccer Rules

The game of soccer is fun. The main goals of the Lassen Youth Soccer Association are to make soccer an enjoyable experience for all those associated with the game and also to make it an educational experience. The following paragraphs contain a few basic rules to help the parent, spectator, and player, enjoy the game. Soccer for the under-eight (U8) players is different than for older players. Special emphasis is put on teaching the game and avoiding penalties.

Law 1 - The Field of Play:

1. Length: 30 yards

2. Width: 20 yards

3. Goals: Home team is responsible for setting up the pop-up goals.

Law 2 - The Ball: Size three (3).

Law 3 - The Number of Players: four (4) players from each team on the field. No goalkeepers.

1. Substitutions: At any stoppage and unlimited.

2. Playing time: Each player SHALL play a minimum of 50% of the total playing time.

3. Teams and games may be coed.

Law 4 - The Players Equipment: Conform to FIFA. Non-uniform clothing is allowed based on weather conditions, but uniforms must still distinguish teams. Please check equipment before the start of play. No dangerous equipment is allowed; no sharp or metal cleats, watches, rings, earrings or jewelry of any kind. The uniform consists of a shirt, shorts and socks. The goal-keeper must have a different color jersey than his teammates and the opposite team.

Law 5 - The Referee: An OFFICIAL (Coach or Game Manager or Coordinator or Parent or Grade 9 referee) may be used. One (1) Live-Scanned (approved) "OFFICIAL" from each team may be present on the field of play simultaneously for officiating/coaching purposes.

Law 6 - The Assistant Referees: None. See Law 5.

Law 7 - The Duration of the Match: The match shall be divided into four (4) equal, ten (10) minute quarters. There shall be a two (2) minute break between quarters one and two, and another two (2) minute break between quarters three and four. There shall be a halftime interval of five (5) minutes. Time is not stopped for any reason. Time may be added at the end of the quarter for injuries.

Law 8 - The Start and Restart of Play:

1. A coin is tossed and the team that wins the toss decides which goal it will attack. The other team will take the kick-off.

2. Goals cannot be scored directly from a kick-off.

3. Opponents of the team taking the kick-off are at least four (4) yards from the ball until it is in play. The ball is "in play" when it has obtained forward motion by a player from the attacking team.

4. After a goal, teams will return to center field. The team that has been scored upon will kick-off.

5. A kick-off will be taken to start each quarter. The team who takes the kick off to start the game will also kick-off in the 2nd quarter. The opposing team will take the kick-offs to start the 3rd and 4th quarters.

6. After half-time, the teams exchange sides of the field and the kick-off is taken by the team who began the game as the defending team.

Law 9 - The Ball In and Out of Play: Conform to FIFA.

1. Ball is out of play when it has wholly crossed the goal line (end line) or touch line (side line) whether on the ground or in the air or when play has been stopped by the referee.

2. Ball is in play at all other times, including when it rebounds off a goalpost, crossbar or corner flag-post and remains in the field of play.

3. Drop Ball: The drop ball is used for any temporary stoppage of the game by the referee, such as an injury, loose object on the field, or other non-foul situation. One player from each team face each other while the referee drops the ball. The must touch the ground before it is in play and can be kicked. If it is kicked before it touches the ground, the ball must be re-dropped.

Law 10 - The Method of Scoring: Conform to FIFA. The goal can only scored in the attacking half of the field. It is considered a goal once the ball has completely crossed the goal line between between the goal posts/markers.

Law 11 - Offside: None.

Law 12 - Fouls and Misconduct: Conform to FIFA with the exception that all fouls shall result in a direct free kick. The referee/coach/parent must explain ALL infringements to the offending player. No cards shown for misconduct. No slide tackles are allowed in any age group. Penalties include: abusive language, dangerous play, and intentionally touching the ball with the hands, tripping, pushing, charging, among others. For these violations, the referee will penalize the violator with a direct free kick for his opponent.

Law 13 - Free Kicks: Conform to FIFA with the exceptions that all free kicks are direct and opponents are at least four (4) yards from the ball until it is in play.

Law 14 - The Penalty Kick: None. For fouls by the defending team within four (4) yards of the goal, the ball must be placed nearest the location of the foul at least four (4) yards away from the goal, and a direct free kick taken with the opposing players at least four (4) yards away from the ball until it is in play.

Law 15 - The Throw-In: Conform to FIFA with the exception that an improperly performed throw-in can be retaken once. When the ball is out over the touch-line (side-line), the team that last touched the ball will lose control, and their opponent will throw the ball in at the point where the ball went out. A "throw-in" is taken with both feet on the ground behind the line, and with the ball starting from behind the head. The ball must pass over the top of the head before being released into play.

Law 16 - The Goal Kick: Is a direct free kick awarded to the defending team when the attacking team kicks the ball across the defending team's goal line. The goal kick should be taken within 2-3 yards of the goal line anywhere across the width of the goal at the nearest point from where the ball was retrieved. Opposing players must be four (4) yards away from the ball until it is in play.

Law 17 - The Corner Kick: Conform to FIFA with the exception that opponents remain at least four (4) yards from the ball until it is in play. A corner kick is awarded when the defending team touches the ball last before it crosses the defending team's end-line (goal-line) on the outside of the goal posts. A corner kick is taken only by the attacking team from one of the two corners on the defending team's side of the field.

Spectators: including the parents, coaches, and substitute players, are to stay at least 6-10 feet from the sideline. No spectators are allowed near the end-line (goal-line). No one is to enter the field of play without permission from the referee. Players are not to leave or enter the field without the permission of the referee.

Under-eight (U8) soccer competition is mainly for the enjoyment of the players and the spectators. For this reason, the referee (if one is available) will try to explain the rules and procedures to the players, rather than penalize them.

There are no standings in under-eight competition. It is a no lose game where enjoyment and sportsmanship are emphasized, instead of just obtaining points.