Lincoln County Parks & Recreation

Under 8 Soccer Rules

Under 8 Soccer Rules download_pdf

  1. The Field of Play: The dimensions are smaller to accommodate the 6 v 6 game and are appropriate for the movement capabilities of four and five year old children.  These adjusted dimensions provide more practical space allowing players to be successful.
  2. The Ball: Must be a size three.  The smaller ball is lighter and more easily kicked, received, dribbled, and passed.
  3. The Number of Players: There are to be 6 players on the field for each team at a time.  However, the coaches should be encouraged to allow players from the team with sufficient numbers to “loan” a player or two to the team that is short players and the PLAY.Goal Keeper is permitted to use his/her hands.

    Play must be stopped for all substitutions; we can never allow on-the-fly substitutions.  The rationale for substitutions at any stoppage is to give more playing time as noted.

  4. The Players Equipment: Uniforms must be warn to distinguish teams.  Non-uniform clothing is allowed based on weather conditions.
  5. The Referee:  A referee is not really needed for this age group.  Instead, the two coaches should supervise the game for safety sake.  Only one coach per team is permitted on the field and one coach per team is permitted behind the goal.  All rule infringements shall be briefly explained to the offending player and all wrongful play is to be called by either coach.  “Do-overs” should be a regular occurrence allowed by the coaches supervising the game. All coaches are required to have a whistle.  If the whistle is blown, all play must stop.
  6. Duration of the Match:  The game is divided into four (4) equal 12-minute quarters.  Quarters are played to accommodate the attention span and physical limitations of the children.  The clock is to run constantly unless there is a significant delay. Quarters should end on a dead ball, not during the middle of a play.  There shall be a 2 minute break between quarters and a 5 minute break at half time.  Teams will switch sides at the half.  Time keeper should give a 1-minute warning prior to expiration of each quarter.
  7. The Start and Restart of Play:  Kick-off will start the game and restart the game after a score.  During a kick-off, the ball must be placed at the center line in the circle.  The ball must cross the center line and the opposing team can not be in the circle at any time during a kick-off.
  8. Offside: There shall be no offside penalty called during these games.
  9. Fouls and Misconduct: If a child is being too rambunctious then the coaches will be allowed to make a substitute of that player to give the child a chance to calm down before returning to play.  Pushing, elbowing, shirt-pulling, and excessive aggression is not acceptable and MUST be corrected.  No cards shown for misconduct.
  10. Indirect Free Kicks: An indirect free kick is only used at this level.  It is suggested that all opponents are at least four (4) yards from the ball whichever a larger distance is until the ball is put in play.  A goal cannot be scored until 2 players touch the ball.
  11. The Penalty Kick:  There will not be any penalty kicks called, but there is a penalty box.
  12. The Throw-In: If the ball goes out of bounds on the side line, a throw-in must be made to put the ball in play.  The throw-in must be made at the exact location that the ball went out of bounds.  The correct way to do a throw-in is by keeping both feet planted on the ground and the ball must be released over the players’ head using both hands.  If a throw-in is done incorrectly, the player may keep trying until it is done correctly.  The parameter line is considered in bounds.
  13. The Goal Kick:  A goal kick is taken if the ball crosses the goal line by which the offense last touches the ball.  The ball should be placed in/on the goal box to make it easier for the child taking the goal kick to get the ball well into the field of play once it is kicked.  The defending players must stand at least four (4) yards away from the ball until it is in play.  The position of the defending players is so that the attaching team has a chance to advance the ball up the field.
  14. The Corner Kick:  A corner kick is taken if the ball crosses the goal line by which the defense last touches the ball.  It is taken at the closest corner anywhere in the arc.  The defending players must stand at least four yards away from the ball until it is in play.
  15. Playing Time:  A minimum of at least 50% playing time is required. However, coaches need to use their judgment if a player is not capable of playing for that length of time.  But do not take advantage of this.  This is not a “win-at-all cost” type of program.
  16. Scoring/Standings: This is a non-competitive age group and score and standings will not to be kept.  Coaches are to discourage their players from keeping score.
  17. Players are to sit on the sidelines and parents are to sit on the opposite side of the field.
  18. First Southern Veterans Park is a fan-friendly park so please be a park-friendly fan and pick up all trash on the field after practice and games.