Rules of 5 a side football
Five a side football is played in much the same way as regular football but with a few changes that are necessary for playing a smaller scale game. 5 a side football can be played either inside in a gym, sports hall or five a side pitch or as an outdoor game on a five a side pitch or open ground. Five a side football is a fast moving game played for a shorter period time than full size football. A 5 a side football game typically lasts between ten and twenty minutes each half.
The basic rules of full size football apply to 5 a side football and should be followed wherever possible. There is not an organising body that regulates the rules of five a side football, instead the rules of 5 a side football vary between different leagues and age groups, sometimes with the players simply agreeing upon the rules before starting a game. There is also a version of five a side football called Futsal developed in South America that is becoming popular and which has an organised rules structure governed by FIFA.
When playing 5 a side football, players should wear trainers and not traditional studded boots, although shin pads should still be worn. Two goals with nets and a football, are really all the equipment that is needed to play five a side football.
The 5 a side football pitch
Many five a side football pitches are surrounded by rebound boards that ensure that the ball never goes out of play. Playing surfaces include grass, board ľas in gyms, tarmac and Astroturf. 5 a side football is also often played outside in an area with no markings and no rebound boards.
The 5 a side football pitch should be between the maximum size of 42.65 metres length x 25.91 metres width and the minimum size of 16.76 metres length x 25.91metres width.
The centre of the 5 a side football pitch is marked and surrounded by a marked circle of 91cms radius. Sometimes, a half way line is marked across the pitch.
The penalty areas of a 5 a side football pitch are marked by a semi circle of approximately 7.62 metres radius drawn from the centre of each goal line.
The 5 a side goals
The goals can vary in size for 5 a side football but are much smaller than the full size game. Sizes of goal typically measure 4.88metres length x 1.2metres height for a senior game, 3.66 x 1.2 for a junior game but mini goal sizes are also acceptable, especially for children, and can be as small as 2.44 metres length x 1.2 metres height.
The 5 a side football team
The five a side football team is made up of four outfield players and a goalkeeper. The team can be set out as two forwards, two defenders and one goal keeper, or perhaps goalkeeper, one defender, two midfield players and one forward player. The goal keeper should wear something to distinguish him or her from the other 5 a side team members.
Because of the small size of the five a side football pitch, there is more scope for players to play in different roles , such as defending in one move, and attacking in the next. Five a side football is a fast moving game involving a lot of passing and dribbling. The long ball game is not an option because of limited space, players and the height restrictions of the game.
The rules of 5 a side football
- The choice of playing ends should be decided by tossing a coin.
- When beginning a game of five a side football, the ball should be dropped by the referee into the centre circle between one player from each side, both of whom should stand no closer than 0.91metres (3ft) from the centre mark. After each goal scored, play should be restarted in the same way.
- Headers are not allowed in five a side football and the ball should not be played above head height. If this rule is infringed a free kick should be awarded to the opposing team.
- If a goalkeeper inadvertently kicks or throws the ball above head height in 5 a side football, the game should be restarted with a roll in corner awarded to the opposing team.
- There are no indirect free kicks allowed in five a side football. All kicks are free kicks which means that it permissible to score directly from the free kick.
- In five a side football, the goal keeper is the only player allowed in the goal area, and if defending players enter this area, or the goal keeper leaves it, a penalty is awarded to the opposing team.
- There is no offside rule in 5 a side football.
- Sliding tackles are not allowed.
- When five a side football is played on a pitch without barriers surrounding the playing area, the opposing side uses a kick rather than a throw in if the ball goes out of play
- (When playing 5 a side football on a pitch with rebound barriers, the ball does not go out of play).
- The normal rules of football apply to the goal keeper when receiving back passes, that is, the goal keeper must kick the ball back into play and not handle it. If the goal keeper handles the ball in 5 a side this way, the opposing team is awarded a free kick to be taken 2 metres from outside the goal area (penalty box)
- Players have to remain at 2 metres distance from the player with possession of the ball, in 5 a side football, when taking penalties, free kicks, corners etc.
- When taking a penalty, the player is not allowed to take more than two steps.
- Up to three substitutions can be made in a game of 5 a side football.
The rules of futsal
- Futsal is played in much the same way as 5 a side football. The major differences to the rules of five a side football are as follows:
- Futsal is always played for 20 minutes each half with the clock being stopped if the ball goes out of play or there are any stoppages.
- There is no height restriction in Futsal as in five a side football, the ball can be kicked or headed to any height.
- Rolling substitutions can be used in Futsal, with up to twelve players being changed throughout a game.
- Goalkeepers are allowed to come out of their area, and players are allowed into the penalty area, similar to conventional 5 a side
- All kick ins, goal kicks and corners etc have to be carried out within four seconds, which the referee indicates by holding up his fingers and counting down. If play is not restarted within this time, an indirect free kick is awarded to the opposing team.
- Players have to remain at 5 metres distance from the player with possession of the ball on penalties, free kicks, corners etc.
- Sliding tackles are not allowed in Futsal, as in 5 a side football, but sliding can be used to stop the ball going out of play or as a defensive measure.
- If a team accumulates five indirect free kicks awarded against them in one half, the sixth will automatically be a free kick taken 10 metres from the goal or from the point where the last offence took place. This is not the same in conventional 5 a side