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1st-2nd GRADE

Rules For DSA Recreational Soccer Teams



These rules apply to all age-levels:

1)     Parents and fans can cheer positively…no negatives…no ‘coaching’ from parents on the sidelines

2)     Coaches can cheer positively…coaches may correct, but not by yelling and screaming negatives at a player.

3)     Neither parents, fans, players or coaches are permitted to ridicule or intimidate the refs…the refs control the game…the coaches facilitate the play…the players play the game…the fans enjoy the game…and EVERYONE supports the players, the teams, coaches and the refs. 

4)     Parents and fans must observe the game on the sidelines opposite from the players and coaches.

5)     Parents, fans, players and coaches are not permitted to observe the game from an end-line.

6)     Players, coaches, parents, fans and refs must comply with the DSA Code Of Conduct.

7)     Coaches must give equal playing time to every player on their roster.



These rules apply to the 1st/2nd League:


1)     Teams in the 1st/2nd league should have 2 or 3 practice sessions before the season opens.  Once the season begins, they play twice each week (as scheduled) on the ‘Mini Fields’ at Mingo Park. Teams in the 1st/2nd league will also schedule a practice once every other week, plus teams in the 1st/2nd league will have all-league group training sessions several times during the season as scheduled by the league’s director.



2)     Objectives:  have fun…demonstrate and teach good sportsmanship above all else…become familiar with the ball…develop a desire to play with the ball…motivate the kids to play and learn more about soccer, teamwork and good sportsmanship…develop basic technique with throw-ins, stopping the ball with feet, thigh, chest…develop dribbling skills, changing directions, begin using both feet to dribble…teach passing…develop a sense of 2 lines of play.


3)     The time indicated on your schedule is the time when your session begins on the mini fields.  You will practice for 25 - 30 minutes…then divide your team and play a game against your opponent for the remaining 30+ minutes of your session.


4)     When dividing your team in half (for your game), you should try to divide them according to playing ability.  One group should be those who demonstrate greater ability, experience and/or active playing style. The other group should be those who demonstrate lesser ability, experience and/or active playing style.  This is often achieved by placing the 1st graders on one team and the 2nd graders on the other team…BUT…there are always exceptions so be mindful that the two groups should be based on ability, experience and/or active playing style not always by grade level.


5)     Goal keepers ARE used in the 1st/2nd grade league.  When the goal keeper has possession of the ball, they can either kick (punt) the ball in play or throw the ball back in play. Whenever the goal keeper puts the ball back in play, the opposing team can’t kick the ball UNTIL another player from the goal keeper’s team has kicked the ball. Then it is in play for either team. 


6)     There is no ‘Offsides’ rule in the 1st/2nd league.  However, no “cherry-pickers” on offense in the 1st/2nd league.  


7)     The coach should designate two lines of players – front line and back line.  Players must play in both lines during each game, thus beginning to learn how to play more in positions, rather than all over the field as is customary in the younger leagues.  Coaches may not load up a team to either run up a score or unfairly prevent the opponent from scoring.  The mission is to keep the game moving, creating a free-flow style of play.  Players should not be restricted from going to the ball UNLESS that player has been deliberately placed in a position because he/she had been dominating play and/or scoring too many goals at-will.


8)     Although the rule is, indeed, to have two lines, this does not mean that the defense is supposed to stay back by the goal while the forwards advance and try to score.  Both lines can and should advance down the field to try to score…and move back as their opponent re-gains control of the ball.  That’s where the “players should not be restricted from going to the ball” comes in. It’s hard thing to teach a young child… but we want 1st and 2nd graders to avoid ending up in a mass of players all kicking at the ball together as with the younger leagues. That’s why we introduce the two lines…and teach players to pass side to side, front to back, back to front…the 2 lines helps the player begin to see that soccer is a game of space…and passing…and teamwork


9)     Games will be on the Mini-fields at Mingo Park as scheduled.  Use a size 3 ball.  The game consists of four 9 minute quarters with a 3 minute break between quarters and a 5 minute half-time break.


10)  Players on the field shall range from 4 to 6 aside with everyone playing…all players should be on the field…no substitutions unless the two opposing teams are way out of balance.


11)  Tennis shoes or soft-cleated soccer shoes are recommended.  Shin guards are highly recommended.


12)  Coaches are on the field during the games…instructing, supporting and serving as the refs.


13)  Coaches are NOT permitted to kick the ball, interfere with play, or even be close to the ball once the game begins (the coaches size can be an intimidating/inhibiting factor to the children).


14)  To begin play, opponents must be 5 yards away during the kickoff.  The ball must be played forward and can’t be touched by the initial kicker until first touched by another player.  Re-start if necessary.


15)  When one team kicks the ball out of bounds on a sideline or end-line, the other coach should select a player to throw the ball in using a soccer throw-in…do not look for perfection…let the kids have fun throwing it in over their heads.


16)  To score, the ball must completely cross the line in the goal…do NOT keep score or emphasize the score…do NOT run up the score against your opponent.


17)  Even though we do not keep score, if you know your team is leading by 3 - 4 goals, you must subtly modify your team’s method of play, enabling the other team to score a few goals and feel a part of the game (vs. becoming frustrated and seemingly tired).  


For example, your team must play back and let your opponent get closer to the goal before your team can touch the ball…and/or each player on your team must pass the ball to another player when the ball is passed to them (vs. receiving the ball and immediately scoring.)  When a team is required to pass back and forth, eventually an opponent will get the ball, thus minimizing your team scoring...often, a team scores many goals because of 1 or 2 high-impact players.


18)  If you have a player who is repeatedly scoring, after he/she’s scored a couple of goals, then modify his/her game a bit.  Some possibilities are to have him/her play back or tell him/her he/she must pass to the other players and can’t score again until all of the other players have scored. 


19)  Only flagrant fouls or uncontrolled charging of an opponent should be addressed.  Players should be approached individually…the foul should be explained while another ball is thrown in by the coach and the play continues.  No intentional pushing, kicking or slide tackling another player is permitted.


20)  No free kicks, penalty kicks, goal kicks or corner kicks…no off-sides.


21)  Heading the ball is NOT permitted


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DELAWARE, Ohio 43015

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