Pre Academy Rules

U8 Game Play Rules
  • Games will be played Saturday mornings. If there is a loss of more than one game due to weather, we will make it up Monday evening. 
  • Ball size is #3.
  • U8 will be 4v4  
  • Substitutions can only occur at quarter breaks and halftime. 
  • Each player must wear team uniform - jersey, shorts, socks, and shin guards. (shin guards must be completely covered by uniform socks). All players must have the same color socks on at all games. 
  • Soft-cleated soccer shoes must be worn.
  • All players shall get a minimum 50% of the playing time.
  • Game Lengths, (4) 10 min quarters, (2) 2-minute quarter breaks, 5-minute break at halftime, 49-minute total game.
  • Each team shall change goals at the start of the second half.
  • The build out line will be used and enforced in all U8 games. 
  • Starts and restarts: Opponents must be outside the center circle while a kickoff is in progress and until the ball is touched. For all free or indirect free kicks, opponents shall be 8 yards away.
  • Balls that go out of bounds will be kick-ins. Opponents must back up 6-8 yards from the kick-in position. 
  • Scores will be kept. 
  • There will be offsides violations, however it will be lenient. We will use the edge of the center circle as the line on the opponents side. 
  • A goal cannot be scored until the ball has been played/touched by a second player on either team.
  • Coaches will both be the referees of the game and their placement on the field must be diagonally opposite. They will stay levelheaded and treat both teams as if they are their own. The goal is to improve all players, not to win the league. 
  • For balls going over the goal line a goal kick will be taken if attacking team kicks it out. If defending team kicks if over the goal line corner kicks will be given to the attacking team. Opponents must back past the build out line on goal kicks. 
  • All fouls are at the coach’s discretion. If there is a disagreement it will be dealt with after the game, not during 
  • Slide tackles are not permitted. 
  • If a team is up by 4, they must make 3 CONSECUTIVE passes to score. If they lose the ball, the count starts over. If they score before then, it does not count. This is the coach’s responsibility to enforce this
  • If a team is up by 6 they must make 6 CONSECUTIVE passes to score
  • If a team is up by 8 they must make 10 CONSECUTIVE passes to score.
  • No intentional head balls.  If an intentional head ball occurs, opposing team is granted an indirect kick from spot of the foul.
  • Hand balls result in an indirect kick for the opposing team. 
  • A player must not use equipment or wear anything that is dangerous to himself or another player (including any kind of jewelry). All items of jewelry (necklaces, rings, bracelets, earrings, leather bands, rubber bands, etc.) are strictly forbidden and must be removed. Using tape to cover jewelry is not acceptable.

Safety Reminders
  • No child should ever be hanging from a goals or nets. Please stop anyone you see that is hanging off a goal. Flag poles should also not be hung from. 
  • No spectator should be sitting on the end lines of the field. This is an off-limits area. Please remind your parents about this when games start. We will also have reminders about this before games start. 
  • There should be no parents within 20 feet of the team benches during games. 
  • Socks most cover shin guards at all practices and games.


Gameplay
    • The GOAL of this age is to spread the ball around and ensure everyone gets a chance to touch it as much as possible
    • We will try to teach them to stay in a diamond the entire game and teach them to master the space. 
    • Players will have dotted lines on the field going vertically to try and help with positioning. Offense – outside 2 players go outside the lines, Defense – come inside the lines. 
    • If there is a Kick in, or restart, we want whoever has touched the ball the least to have the opportunity to kick it in. 
    •  All Kick offs must go backwards to the back of the diamond then played to the open man. We want to teach good soccer. 
  • The player at the back of the diamond must move up to at least midfield when the attackers are pushed up. We do not camp defenders in the back. 

Parent Etiquette
    • When to cheer and when not to cheer is incredibly important. It can be extremely impactful in a negative sense and positive. 
    • Please only cheer when the ball goes out of bounds, when someone scores, a period ends, or when it is a clear breakaway to the goal. In these moments cheer as loud as you can and be extremely positive. Let them know they did an awesome job. 
    • Do not cheer every single time a player touches a ball or kicks it. This causes mass chaos and distracts the kids. We want them to listen to the coaches only during this time. This will be difficult but it is absolutely huge if we want them to learn. 
    • Never complain about a call, result etc. Do not say anything to the coaches during the game. Our goal is development at this age. It is more important for these kids to win when they are 16-18 years old, not when they are 6-7.