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2nd and 3rd Grade


Rules For DYAA 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 DYAA Code Of Conduct.

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



These rules apply to the 2nd/3rd Grade League:

1)    Distribute a copy of these rules to every parent on your team AND review every rule at your parent/player meeting before the season begins.


2)    Teams in the 2nd/3rd grade league should have 3 or 4 practice sessions before the season opens.  After the season begins, teams in this league will typically practice once each week plus they play twice each week as scheduled.


3)    Objectives:  have fun…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…further develop basic technique with throw-ins, stopping the ball with feet, thigh, chest…develop dribbling skills, changing directions, using both feet to dribble…teach passing…develop sense of field and team play…develop understanding of the rules…develop understanding of three lines of play.


4)    Games will be on the small junior fields at MingoPark.  Use a size 4 ball.  The game consists of four 10 minute quarterswith a 3 minute break between the 1st and 3rd quarters and a 5 minute half-time break.  The more frequent breaks created by playing 4 quarters during each game enables coaches to instruct their teams every 10 minutes.


5)    Games will consist of 6, 7, 8 or 9 field players and a goalie.  The opposing coaches decide how many players will be in the field during a game based on the number of players on the roster and how many players show up for the game.


6)    Coaches can make substitutions on a) any corner kick, b) your team’s throw-in, c) Your opponent’s throw-in if they are sending in a sub (but not if your opponent isn’t subbing on their throw-in), d) goal kicks, e) kick-offs from mid field (following a goal) and f) 1:1 following an injury if the injured player leaves the field.


7)    If coaches agree, they may increase or decrease the number of field players on a side, so long as both teams have the same number of players on the field at the same time.


8)    Tennis shoes or soft-cleated soccer shoes are recommended.  Shin guards are required and must be under the socks (not w/ socks folded down over)


9)    During the first 2 weeks of each season, each team can have no more than 2 coaches on the field instructing their players while the game is being played (i.e. there will be no refs for the 1st two weeks).  After the 1st two weeks of the season, coaches are NOT on the field during the games (unless they are reffing).  The coach must instruct and direct their players from the sidelines.  

10) To begin play, opponents must be outside the circle and on their half of the field.  Players from the kicking team must be on their half, but may be positioned anywhere on the field. The ball may be played forward or backward; cannot be touched a 2nd time by the initial kicker until first touched by another player.  Re-start if necessary. The Ref may award an Indirect free kick to the opposing team for repeat infractions.


11) To score, the ball must completely cross the line in the goal…do NOT emphasize the score…do NOT run up the scoreagainst your opponent.


12) If one team goes ahead by 4 goals, they must pull one player off the field.  If that team scores again (ie now up by 5 goals) they must pull a second player off the field.  If they’re scored on (ie now up by 4 goals) they can put one player back on the field.  If they’re scored on again (ie now up by 3 goals) they can put the other player back on the field so that both teams are again at full strength.   This same process will continue back and forth if one team goes up by 4 again.  If a team is more than 5 goals ahead, they do not need to pull any more players off the field, but they must introduce some internal team procedures such as:  players must score with their left foot (or right if the player is left footed)


13) Flagrant fouls will be called by the referee.  Offside will be called, but the ref will interpret the off-sides rule more loosely than with the older leagues (since off-sides is being introduced for the first time at this age level). REFER TO “BUILDOUT LINE” RULES in separate document.


14) Free kicks, penalty kicks, goal kicks and corner kicks will be taken at this level


15) Although not required, it is recommended that the coach designate three lines of players – front line (strikers), middle (half backs) and back (full backs).  It is further recommended that all players be given opportunities to play in each of the lines throughout the season, thus helping each player develop a sense of the entire field and the responsibilities of the various positions.  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.  For example, even though your team is playing three lines, this does not, however, mean that the defense is supposed to stay back by the goal while the forwards advance and try to score.  


All three lines can and should advance up and down the field…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 a hard thing to teach… but we want 2nd/3rd graders to avoid ending up in a mass of players all bunched up and kicking at the ball together.  That’s why we begin to introduce the lines as early as in 1st grade.  In the 2nd/3rd grade league you can be teaching them to pass side to side, front to back, back to front…the 3 lines helps the player realize that soccer is a game of space…and passing…and teamwork.


16) The time indicated on your schedule is the time when your GAME STARTS on the junior fields. Please be ready to begin your game promptly at that time.  Arrive at least 30 minutes before game time, allowing plenty of time for warm-ups.


17) Coaches will designate when your practice sessions will be.


The most commonly invoked rules in soccer:


1)    If the defending team plays the ball over its own end line, the attacking team puts the ball back in play with a “corner kick.”


2)    If the attacking team plays the ball over the defending team’s end line, a “goal kick” is awarded.  A goal kick is taken from anywhere inside the goal area (small box) by any player on the defending team. The goal kick is not considered ‘in play’ until it has been touched by a 2nd player of the team taking the goal kick, or the ball crosses the buildout line.  No opponents are allowed inside the buildout area until the ball is ‘in play’. If an opposing player crosses the line before the ball is ‘in play,’ the goal kick is retaken. For multiple infringements, the ref may award an indirect kick to the defending team from the buildout line at the point the opponent crossed that line prematurely. 


3)    No field player may deliberately touch the ball with their hands.  If the ball inadvertently touches a player’s hands it may not be a foul—at the sole discretion of the referee.  When a “hand ball” is called, the opposing team is awarded a direct kick (ie. the team can score without the ball having to be touched by another player) at the point of the infraction.


4)    In the event of an inadvertent (in the opinion of the referee) handball in the penalty area, play may continue.  A deliberate hand ball in the penalty area results in a penalty kick which is a free kick taken from the penalty spot.  In DYAA at this age level, only a flagrant foul or handball in the box will result in a penalty kick. 


5)    When a player is taking a penalty kick, all other players must outside the penalty area and behind the penalty mark.  For all other awarded free kicks, defending players must be at least 10 yards away from the where the ball is being kicked.  The teammates taking a non-penalty free kick can be as close to the ball as they wish.


6)    A player is in an“offside position” if, while OVER THE ATTACKING SIDE OF THE BUILDOUT LINES, he/she is closer to the goal line than a) the ball and b) the 2nd last opponent..  Offside offense isn’t called unless the player interferes w/ a defender, attempts to play the ball, or gains any advantage from his offside position in the opinion of the ref.  An indirect kick (ie. a goal can’t be scored without the ball having first been touched by another player) is awarded from the position where the player is offside. 


7)    Remember that a player even with the last opponent is Onside…a player is only in an offside position if he/she is a) past the buildout line w/o the ball and b) closer to the goal line than both the ball and the 2nd last opponent.


8)    “Direct kicks” are awarded at the site of the infraction for handballs, tripping, kicking, pushing, holding, violently charging, jumping at or impeding with contact. A player kicking the ball while he/she is on the ground if other players are near the ball is considered to be creating a “dangerous play,” as is a player high-kicking in proximity of any other players. Indirect free kicks are awarded to the opponent for dangerous play without contact. 


9)    Flagrant and/or intentional fouls shall result in direct kicks…flagrant and/or intentional fouls inside the box shall result in a penalty kick.  Non-flagrant and/or unintentional fouls inside or outside the penalty box might not be called—at the discretion of the referee.  All fouls should be explained clearly and stringently


10) A dropped ball is awarded at the spot of last touch whenever the ref is uncertain of possession, after an injury stoppage, or when the ball strikes a ref—remains in play—and either changes possession, a goal is scored, or a goal scoring opportunity is created, for which a dropped ball is awarded at the spot it touched the ref to the team that last touched it. If, when play was stopped, the ball was in the penalty area—or was last touched in the penalty area—the dropped ball goes to the defending goalkeeper.


11) Slide tackling is not permitted.


12) Heading the ball is NOT permitted, per USSF policy and concern for player safety. Refs may whistle an intentional header and the restart is an indirect kick.


13) The keeper should not handle the ball w/ his hands if intentionally kicked back to him by a teammate.  If so, the opposing team receives an indirect kick from the point where the keeper handled the ball.  If the ball ricochets back to the goalie off a teammate, then the goalie may pick up the ball with his/her hands.



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