Poughkeepsie Soccer Club Simplified Soccer Rules

We encourage our coaches, parents and players to become familiar with the rules of soccer. The following is intended to be only a summary of the more important points. Many of these rules do not apply to all age groups, which have a special set of rules and procedures.

Team

Varies: we play small-sided games in U5, U6, U7, U8, and U10 teams.

Goalkeeper

Wears a differently colored jersey than teammates. He or she is the only player who may play the ball with the hands, but only inside his or her own penalty area. May not take more than six seconds to release the ball after he or she has once gotten control of the ball.

Ball Out of Play

All of the ball must go COMPLETELY past the OUTSIDE EDGE of the touchline or the goal line, either on the ground or in the air to be out of play.

Scoring a Goal

The entire ball must go completely past all of the goal line into the goal.

Throw In

When the entire ball crosses over the outside of the touchline play stops and a Throw In is awarded the opposing team at the spot the ball went out. The player taking the Throw In must have both feet on the ground BEHIND or ON-TOP-OF the touchline and deliver the ball from behind the head with both hands.

Corner Kick

When the entire ball crosses over the end line without scoring a goal and is last touched by a defending player, play is restarted by an attacking player taking a kick from the corner area nearest where the ball when over the end line. Does not apply in U6.

Goal Kick

When the entire ball crosses over the end line without scoring a goal and is last touched by an attacking player, play is restarted by a defending player taking a kick from anywhere inside the defending goal area.

Offside Penalty

U10 and above. A player is in an OFFSIDE POSTIION (but not necessarily guilty of an offside offense) if

  • He or she is ahead of the ball, and

  • He or she is in the opponent's half of the field, and

  • There are fewer than two opponents ahead of him or her.

There is an offside offense only if, in the opinion of the referee, a player in an offside position participates in the play, interferes with an opponent, or otherwise tries to take advantage of his/her offside position. The foul is judged at the time the ball is kicked, not when received. An indirect free kick is awarded to the other team when an offside offense occurs.

Indirect Free Kick

An IFK, from which a goal may not be directly scored, is awarded to the opposing team for the following non-penal fouls:

  • Playing in a dangerous way or putting oneself into a dangerous position.

  • Impeding the progress of an opponent trying to get to the ball.

  • Preventing the goalkeeper from releasing the ball into play.

  • Goalkeeper delaying the game.

Direct Free Kick

A DFK, from which a goal may be directly scored, is awarded to the opposing team for the following penal fouls when committed carelessly, recklessly or with excessive force:

  • Kicking or attempting to kick an opponent.

  • Tripping or attempting to trip an opponent.

  • Jumping at an opponent.

  • Violently charging an opponent.

  • Charging an opponent.

  • Striking or attempting to strike an opponent.

  • Pushing an opponent.

A DFK is also awarded for:

  • Making contact with the opponent before touching the ball when tackling an opponent.

  • Holding an opponent.

  • Spitting at an opponent.

  • Deliberately handling the ball (except by a goalkeeper in his or her own penalty area). Note on the "Hand Ball" foul: If the player is not trying to control the ball or is instinctively protecting himself or herself from injury there should be no foul called.

Penalty Kick

The award of a penalty kick is made when a defender inside the defender's penalty area commits a penal foul. This DFK is taken from the penalty spot. All players except the kicker and goalkeeper must be outside the penalty area, behind the ball and at least 10 yards from the penalty spot until the kick has been taken. The ball is in play after it has been kicked forward. The kicker may not re-kick the ball until another player touches it.

Advantage Clause

The referee shall not call any penalty that might, in the opinion of the referee, give an advantage to the team committing the foul.

Misconduct - Caution (showing of the Yellow Card)

May be issued by the referee for:

  • Unsporting behavior, including particularly hard fouls.

  • Dissent by word or action.

  • Persistent infringing the Laws of the Game.

  • Delaying the restart of play.

  • Failing to respect the required distance at a corner kick or free kick.

  • Entering or reentering the field without the referee's permission.

  • Deliberately leaving the field without the referee's permission.

Misconduct - Sending Off (showing of the Red Card)

Maybe issued by the referee for:

  • Serious foul play.

  • Violent conduct.

  • Spitting at anyone.

  • Denying an obvious goal scoring opportunity by a deliberate handball.

  • Denying an obvious goal scoring opportunity by any penal foul.

  • Using offensive, insulting or abusive (or threatening) language.

  • Receiving a second caution in the same game.

An ejected player may not be replaced by a substitute and must immediately leave the field.