Laws of Optus Small-Sided Football: Under 6 & 7
To Play in this competition, children must not turn 7 until after 31 December.
The field of play
Length: 30m / Width: 20m
Markers or painted line markings.
Width: 1.5m - 2.0m / Height: 0.9m - 1.0m
It is preferable that pop up style or portable goals are used where possible however, the use of poles and markers as the goals particularly in the Under 6 to 9 age groups is also suitable.
No penalty area
The number of players
4 v 4 – no goalkeeper. Maximum of two substitutes who may rotate during the entire game. The coach or parent is allowed to make the substitutions while the ball is in play, but must wait until the substituted player has left the field.
Duration of the game
2 x 15 minutes (Half time break 5 minutes). This may be flexible depending on the implementation format.
No Goalkeeper. The game leader, coaches and managers should continually discourage children from permanently standing in front of the goal.
The main role of the game leader is to keep the game moving fluently, limit stoppages and assist players with all match re-starts. Most importantly, they must make every effort to create an environment that ensures that all players have fun and have maximum involvement. The game leader can be a club official, parent, older child / player or beginning referee and should always be enthusiastic and approachable. Most Importantly - Remember the children are learning the game – be flexible and patient.
Start of play & Re-start after a goal
Pass forward to a team mate from the middle of the half way line. All players must be in their own half of the field of play. Opponents must be at least 5m away from the ball until it is in play. The ball must touch a team mate before a goal can be scored.
Ball in and out of play
The ball is out of play when it has wholly crossed the goal line or the touch line on the ground or in the air, or when play has been stopped by the game leader.
Ball crossing the touch line
There is no throw in. A player from the opposing team to the player that touched the ball last before crossing the touch line will place the ball on the touch line and pass or dribble the ball into play. Opponents must be at least 5m away from the ball until it is in play. The ball must touch a team mate before a goal can be scored.
Ball crossing the goal line
There is no corner kick. Regardless of which team touched the ball last, a player from the team whose goal line the ball has crossed will place the ball anywhere along the goal line and pass or dribble the ball into play. Opponents must retreat to the half way line and can move once the ball is in play. The ball must touch a team mate before a goal can be scored.
Method of scoring
A goal is scored when the whole of the ball passes over the goal line, between the goalposts and under the crossbar. When goal posts are not available and cones are used for goals, a goal is scored when the ball passes between the cones without touching them, below shoulder height of the player.
Fouls and misconduct
Indirect free kicks are awarded for all acts of handball or fouls and misconduct. Opponents must be at least 5m away from the ball when the indirect free kick is taken. (An indirect free kick is where a goal can be scored only if the ball subsequently touches another player before it enters the goal).
Most acts of handball or fouls and misconduct at this level are caused by a lack of coordination, with no intent. In this case try and give the advantage to the attacking team and continue play.
If you decide a deliberate or serious act of handball, foul or misconduct has occurred, explain to the child they have done the wrong thing and that they should not do this again.
Point’s tables and finals
To ensure that Optus Small Sided Football is played in the correct spirit and give all players the best possible chance to develop, FFA advises that Member Federations, zones, associations and clubs adopt and promote the following advice and recommendation:
Under 6 & 7 FFA advises that the keeping of point’s tables and playing of finals must not be done.