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3rd and 4th Grade Leagues

THE MOST IMPORTANT RULE - Have fun, watching and playing soccer safely.

Parking: For the safety of the children, please only park in designated parking areas. Do not park or stop on the sides of roads or on the grass.

FIFA Soccer Laws apply except as modified below. Changes compared to Kindergarten and 2nd Grade are marked in red text.

Game Format: Games use a single field playing 5v5 (8v8 can also be played). One of the 5 (8) is a goalie.

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Law 1 - Field and Goals: Field approximately 150 x 90 feet (50 x 30 yards) with 5 x 10 foot goals and a center line.

  • Please pick up all trash, equipment and clothing, etc. after your practice or game.

  • If fields are unlined, please walk off the field marking corners, center line, and goals with flat cones.

  • Please do not allow playing, climbing or hanging on the soccer goal posts or netting. Goals falling on people can cause serious injury.

Law 2 - Ball: Size 3 or size 4

Law 3 - Players: Maximum of 8 players per team playing 5v5 games, one of which is a goalkeeper.

If a team cannot field enough players, the game should still be played and, if needed, cones should be used to adjust the field size and coaches can balance the teams from a competitive perspective by either playing both teams with the same number of players on the field, allowing the team that is clearly weaker to play with more players, loaning players to the other team, playing players out of position, and so-on. Coaches should also make these kinds of adjustments if the game is lopsided.

Goalkeepers are used. 

Unlimited substitutions at any stoppage in play.

All players present, except in the case of injury, must:

  • Play at least half (50%) of the game

  • Have as near equal playing time as possible compared to other players

  • Be given the opportunity to play in each position but not be forced to play in a specific position.

Law 4 - Equipment: Home team wears white and away team wears green. Must wear shin guards under socks. No baseball or football shoes allowed. No jewelry, earrings, or metal hair clips are allowed.

Law 5 & 6 - Referees: Coaches officiate the game and should briefly explain calls to players. Coaches should not participate in the game by kicking or otherwise touching the ball while it is in play.

Law 7 - Duration of Practices and Games: A 40 minutes practice session followed by a 46 minute game. The game consists of 4 equal 10 minute quarters, with a 2 minute break between each quarter and 5 minute break at half time for a total time of 49 minutes. Coaches should only adjust game time in exceptionally circumstance - please let the players play as much as possible.

Law 8 - Start and Restart of Play: Opposing players must be 8 yards (24 feet) from the ball for kickoffs, goal kicks, free kicks, and corner kicks. This is almost a quarter of the field length. Doing so gives the players space to move and prevents bunching immediately on the restart.

Law 10 - Scoring: Let them have fun and score lots of goals. Celebrate and cheer for all goals scored.

Law 11 - Offside: No offsides.

Law 12 - Fouls and Misconduct: No slide tackling allowed. When a foul or misconduct occurs, play should be stopped, the reason why briefly explained, and a direct or indirect kick awarded (no penalty kicks at this age) to the other team. No yellow or red cards are to be awarded. If a player needs to cool off, they should be substituted.

Law 14 - Penalty Kicks: None.

Law 15 - Throw-in: If a player makes an illegal throw-in, a coach should show the correct method and allow the child to retake the throw-in. A useful chant to teach the player is "Both feet on the ground, behind the line, 2 hands on the ball, throw it over my head near a team mate." Opposing players should be 2 yards (6 feet) from the player making the throw-in.

Law 16 - Goal Kick: Players must be 8 yards (24 feet) from the ball.

Law 17 - Corner Kick: Opposing players must be 8 yards (24 feet) from the ball.