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Lesson Two: Rules of the Game

It all begins with an idea.

Rules you may hear about but do not understand (neither do the refs at times)

  • Hand ball – ball makes contact with any part of the arm below the shoulder, outside of the defense/natural frame (this rule can be subjective)

  • Throw In – results from the ball going out of play anywhere on the sidelines but not the end lines (goal line is the line the intersects with either goal)

  • Corner Kicks – given to the attacking team when the ball is put out of play over the end line, by the defending team 

  • Goal Kicks – when the ball is put out of play over the end line by the attacking team

  • Fouls – (in theory) a common foul is when a player kicks, trips, jumps at, charges, strikes, holds, or spits at an opponent.

  • Direct Free Kick – A dead ball kick that the team awarded the kick can score from directly. Results from a foul or a handball. Some are more dangerous than others depending on where the transgression occurred. 

  • Penalty Kicks – Awarded to an attacking team when fouled inside of the 18 yard box. A single player takes a free, direct kick inside the box, from a designated spot, with no defenders allowed. 

  • Offsides – along with a foul, the most subjective call in soccer. In theory, a player cannot be beyond the last field defender when a ball is passed in to that player or close to that player. A player CAN be offsides if they do not affect the play/goal scoring opportunity. You cannot be offside on a corner kick, goal kick or throw in, but you CAN be offside on a direct free kick. Also, you should NOT be ruled offsides if the part of your body that is off cannot score goals. Example: you cannot score with your hand, therefore your hand can be “offsides” This is not always consistent. 

Reference: CSUCI Recreation Soccer Basics

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