League Rules for U9, U10
RULES OF PLAY
Exceptions and Additions for U9/10 Age Groups
Last Updated: February 2018
FIFA rules shall apply except where such rules conflict with these rules and, in these instances, these guidelines are adopted. Unless explicitly stated, rules for U10 apply to U9.
U9 and U10 teams will play with a goalkeeper on the field. See Law 3 - Number of Players for more information.
Law 1 - Field of Play
- Size: 30 to 40 yards wide by 47 to 60 yards long.
- Center Circle: 7 yards in radius.
- Goal Area: 4 yards wide by 14 yards long.
- Penalty Area: 10 yards wide by 20 yards long.
- Penalty Spot: 8 yards and perpendicular from the midpoint of the goal line.
- Penalty Arc: 7 yards in radius from the penalty spot.
- Goals: 6 to 7 feet tall by 18 to 21 feet wide.
Law 2 - The Ball
The ball shall be a size 4.
Law 3 - Number of Players
Each U9/ U10 team shall play no more than 7 players on a single field at a time. One of the players must be a goalkeeper. Team rosters shall have no more than 12 players. An U9/U10 team must have a minimum of 5 players to start and continue a game, and one of the players must be a goalkeeper.
If a team does not have the required number of players, the match will be declared a forfeit and a win awarded.
Coaches must play each registered player who is present one half of the game unless unable to do so due to player’s illness or injury, or for disciplinary reasons. In the event that a player is present but will not be playing, the coach must inform the referee and the opposing coach as to the reason that the player will not participate.
Law 4 - Player’s Equipment
Each player will be required to wear shin guards and appropriate footwear. The referee will inspect shin guards and footwear for possible hazards and may order the equipment changed before the player will be allowed to enter field. Players will not be allowed to wear jewelry, including watches, bracelets, necklaces, earrings or other types of body piercing jewelry. No player wearing a cast, hard or soft, will be allowed to play.
Uniforms will be color coordinated, and must have an identifying number on the jersey. "Sliding pants" may be worn provided that they match the color of the uniform shorts. No caps or headwear, except for goalkeepers, will be allowed, except during adverse weather conditions, and then only at the discretion of the referee.
Law 5 - Referee
A Referee will be provided for each match. Referee will be at least of equivalent age to an Under 14 player, and certification is preferred.
Law 6 - Assistant Referees
There will be two Assistant Referees provided. The Assistant Referees’ duties, subject to the decision of the Referee, are to indicate: when the whole of the ball has passed out of the field of play; which side is entitled to a corner kick, goal kick or throw-in, when a substitution is requested, when a player may be penalized for being in an offside position, when misconduct or any other incident has occurred out of the view of the Referee.
If Assistant Referees are unavailable, each team may be asked to furnish an Assistant Referee whose duties, subject to the decision of the Referee, are to indicate: when the whole of the ball has passed out of the field of play; which side is entitled to a corner kick, goal kick or throw-in, or when a substitution is requested.
Assistant Referees will be at least of equivalent age to an Under 12 player, and do not need to be "certified".
Law 7 - Duration of the Match
The match will consist of two equal 25 minute halves. There shall be a 5-minute half-time. The referee may adjust the length of the halves or the half-time to accommodate injuries, or other stoppages. The referee may elect to lengthen the half-time or provide water breaks at the 12 minute and 37 minute marks as playing conditions dictate.
Law 8 - Start and Restart of Play
A kick-off is a way of starting play at the start of each half and restarting play after a goal has been scored. Play begins when the ball is kicked and has moved. A player taking the initial kick may not play the ball again until it has touched another player. If the kicker touches the ball a second time before it has touched another player, an indirect free kick is awarded to the opposing team at the point where the ball was touched the second time. A goal may be scored directly from a kick-off.
A dropped ball is a way of restarting the match after a temporary stoppage, specifically for an injury. The manner in which the ball is dropped is entirely up to the referee. The ball must touch the ground before it is kicked, or the referee will repeat the drop.
Law 9 - The Ball In and Out of Play
The ball is out of play when it has wholly crossed the goal line or touch line whether on the ground or in the air. The ball is also out of play when play has been stopped by the referee. The ball is in play at all other times, including when it rebounds from a goal post, crossbar, corner flag, or referee.
Law 10 - The Method of Scoring
A goal is scored when the whole of the ball passes over the goal line, between the goal posts and under the crossbar, provided that there has been no infringement of the other rules. Official standings are kept by the league at this age level.
Law 11 - Offside
The Official FIFA rule regarding offside shall apply. It is not an offense in itself to be in an offside position. A player is in an offside position if: he/she is nearer to the opponents goal than both the ball and the second to last defender (including the goalkeeper). A player is not in an offside position if they are on their own defensive half of the field, level with the second to last defender or level with the last two opponents, or behind the position of the ball when it is passed.
A player in an offside position is only penalized if, at the moment the ball touches or is played by one of his/her team mates, he/she is, in the opinion of the Referee, involved in active play by: interfering with play, interfering with an opponent, or gaining an advantage by being in that position.
There is no offense if a player receives the ball directly from: a goal kick, a throw-in, or a corner kick.
For any offside offense, the Referee awards an indirect free kick to the opposing team to be taken from the place where the infringement occurred.
Law 12 - Fouls and Misconduct
Penal Fouls include kicking or attempting to kick an opponent, tripping or attempting to trip an opponent, jumping at an opponent, charging an opponent, striking or attempting to strike an opponent, pushing an opponent, tackling an opponent to gain possession of the ball and making contact with the opponent before touching the ball, holding an opponent, spitting at an opponent, handling a ball deliberately. Penal fouls are punishable by awarding a direct free kick to the opponent of the team committing the foul.
Please note that slide tackling is allowed for U9/U10 play in accordance with the aforementioned rules.
Technical Fouls include playing in a dangerous manner, wasting time, impeding the progress of an opponent (obstruction), prevents the goalkeeper from releasing the ball from his hands, commits any other offense, not previously mentioned in Law 12, for which play is stopped to caution of dismiss a player.
Additionally, offenses by the goalkeeper, including: taking more than four steps or more than 4 seconds while controlling the ball with his hands, before releasing the it from his possession; touching the ball again with his hands after it has been released from his possession and has not touched any other player; touches the ball with his hands after it has been deliberately kicked to him by a team mate; and touching the ball with his hands after he has received it directly from a throw-in taken by a team mate.
In accordance with FIFA rules, a player may be shown a yellow card, and the opponent awarded a free kick for any of the following offenses:
- unsporting behavior
- dissent by work or action
- persistent infringement of the Laws of the Game
- delays in the restart of play
- failure to respect the proper distance when play is restarted with a kick
- entering or reentering the field of play without the referee’s permission
- Also, a player may be shown the red card and sent off the field, and the opponent awarded a free kick for any of the following offenses:
- serious foul play
- violent conduct
- spitting at an opponent
- denying the opposing team a goal by deliberately handling the ball
- using offensive, insulting or abusive language
- second caution in the same match
If a coach or assistant coach commits any of the preceding offenses, they may be shown the yellow card or red card as appropriate, and the referee will report the infringement to the Officer of the Day for appropriate action by the PAYSL Discipline and Protest Committee.
Law 13 - Free Kicks
The ball must be stationary (not moving) when the kick is taken, and the kicker may not touch the ball a second time until it has touched another player. Opposing players must maintain a distance of at least 8 yards from the kicker. The referee will signal that the kick is indirect by raising his arm above his head, and maintaining this position until the kick has been taken and the ball has touched another player or goes out of play, or may extend his hand to signal a direct kick. The ball is in play when it is kicked and has moved.
Law 14 - The Penalty Kick
A penalty kick is awarded against a team which commits one of the ten offenses for which a direct free kick is awarded, inside its own penalty area and while the ball is in play. A goal may be scored directly from a penalty kick. Additional time is allowed for a penalty kick to be taken at the end of each half.
The ball is placed on the penalty mark. The player taking the penalty kick is properly identified. The defending goalkeeper remains on his goal line, facing the kicker, between the goalposts until the ball has been kicked. The other players are located inside the field of play, outside the penalty area, behind the penalty mark, and at least 8 yards from the penalty mark (along the arc).
The Referee does not signal for a penalty kick to be taken until the players have taken up position in accordance with the Law, and decides when a penalty kick has been completed.
The player taking a penalty kick shall, at the signal of the Referee, kick the ball forward, and may not play the ball again until it has been touched by another player. The ball is in play when it moves forward.
Law 15 - The Throw-In
A throw-in is a method of restarting play. A goal cannot be scored directly from a throw-in. A throw-in is awarded when the whole of the ball passes over the touch line, either on the ground or in the air, from the point where it crossed the touch line, and is awarded to the opponents of the player who last touched the ball.
The player taking the throw-in shall face the field of play, keep part of each foot either on the touch line or on the ground outside of the touch line, use both hands, and bring the ball from behind and over his or her head. The thrower may not touch the ball again until it has touched another player. The ball is immediately in play when it enters the field of play.
Goalkeepers may not handle the ball if it is directly throw-in to them by a team mate. They may trap the ball with any part of their body other than their hands or arms, and they may kick the ball.
If a player making the throw infringes on any of the above rules governing throw-ins, the opposing team is awarded the throw-in.
Law 16 - The Goal Kick
A goal kick is a method of restarting play. A goal may be scored directly from taking a goal kick, but only against the opposing team. A goal kick is awarded when the ball, having last touched a player of the attacking team, passes over the goal line, on the ground or in the air, and a goal is not scored in accordance with Law 10.
The ball is placed anywhere within the defending team’s goal area. Opponents remain outside the penalty area until the ball is in play. The kicker does not play the ball again until it has touched another player. The ball is in play when it has been kicked directly beyond the penalty area. Another player on the team taking the goal kick may not play the ball until it has passed entirely out of the penalty area.
If the kicker touches the ball a second time before it is out of the penalty area, or a teammate of the kicker touches the ball before it is out of the penalty area, or if an opponent touches the ball before it is out of the penalty area, then the goal kick shall be retaken.
Law 17 - The Corner Kick
A corner kick is a method of restarting play. A goal kick may be scored directly from a corner kick, but only against the opposing team. A corner kick is awarded when the whole of the ball, having last touched a player of the defending team, passes over the goal line, either on the ground or in the air, and a goal is not scored in accordance with Law 10.
The ball is placed inside the corner arc at the nearest corner flag post. Opponents must remain at least 8 yards from the ball until it is in play. The corner flag post is not moved. The ball is kicked by a member of the attacking team. The ball is in play when it is kicked and has moved. The kicker does not touch the ball a second time until it has touched another player.
Law 18- The Build Out Line
It should be marked at least 14 yards from goal. It may be marked solid or dashed (or in emergencies with flat cones). Clubs can also choose to move it as far back as midfield.
When the goalkeeper comes into possession, whether by save or goal kick, the team that was attacking must retreat back behind the build out line. The keeper then distributes the ball. Once the recieviing player gains possession of the ball, the now defending team can re-enter the area.
Offside will only be called within the build out line area.
No punts or dropkicks are allowed. Infractions are restarted by the goalkeeper distributing again in the same manner as prior to the infraction. Although we have not specifically been told this, I assume (a) that the six second rule does not begin until the players have retreated and (b) the goalkeeper may choose to distribute quickly in which case, there would be no infraction.