Rules For 5-A-Side Arena Soccer


League Format

The format of the league will vary depending on the number of teams involved and the skill levels of the teams.  In general, the format will be a league split into one or more divisions with playoffs scheduled for the last 2 weeks of the season.

Results: 3 points for a win, 1 for a draw and 0 for a loss.  Teams tied on points at end of the league portion will be ranked first on "head to head" encounters, followed by goal difference, goals scored and goals against. 

Co-Ed Requirements

For all Co-Ed games there must be a minimum of 2 male and 2 female players on the field of play at all times.  This requirement INCLUDES the goalkeeper (for example a team may play with one female player outfield and one in goal).  A team may play with a just 1 male or 1 female player but must play short.

If a team is unable to field at least 1 male and 1 female player, the team will forfeit the match.

Team Rosters

All players must be listed on the team roster and have accepted the waiver in order to be eligible to play. Rosters may be checked by the convener or referee - where players who do not meet the roster requirements will be removed and ineligible to play.

Players are permitted to play for multiple teams (including the same game night), however the teams MUST be in different divisions. No exceptions.

Teams are permitted to recruit/add players from other teams during the season, however all recruited players must currently play in a lower division. (ie: Division 2 teams can add player(s) from Division 3, but not from Division 1) 

Playoff Games

If a playoff game ends in a tie:

  1. The game goes immediately to penalty kicks. No extra time or golden goal will be played.
  2. The referee will decide which net is used for the penalty kicks.
  3. Which team shoots first is decided by the referee. 
  4. Each team will take three penalty kicks.
  5. Each team must alternate between male and female shooters. (e.g. if a male kicks the first penalty, the team’s second penalty must be taken by a female and so on)
  6. The goalkeeper who was in goal when the final whistle went must remain in goals for the penalties (a serious injury is the only exception).
  7. If the game is still tied after three penalties each, the teams will continue to take sudden death penalties until one team scores and the other misses, Both teams must take an equal number of penalties.
  8. A male player cannot take a 2nd penalty until every male in the team has taken one. The same rule applies to female players.

Equipment/Set-Up/Team Colours

Teams are comprised of 5 players (including goalie).

We recommend that all players wear suitable footwear such as indoor turf trainers or cleats (metal stud cleats are not allowed).

Shin guards are highly recommended (not mandatory)

Team captains are responsible for making sure that all players on their team wear matching colours.  Team colours are chosen at the beginning of the season and are always visible in the league table and fixture list.  In the event of a colour clash, the Home team (the team listed first on the fixture schedule) will get preference and the Away team must bring an alternative colour or wear pinnies.  The game official may request that players not wearing the correct colours must leave the field of play and change if they deem it to be interfering with the game.  

Kick Off Times  / Default

Games are comprised of 2 x 20 minute halves and kick off every 50 minutes.  


Must be made on a dead ball. 


Anytime the ball hits netting it's dead.  All other typical soccer rules apply. 


A handball will occur for contact anywhere below the shoulder if the referee deems it a deliberate movement or if a significant advantage was gained by using it.  The referee will allow the game to play if he deems it to be incidental, unintentional or of significant advantage to the team in possession of the ball, so always play to the whistle. Women are allowed to protect their chest and men their groin area.

Free Kicks

All free kicks are indirect. To score off an indirect kick, the ball must be touched by another player (offense or defense, including the goalkeeper). Although not strictly illegal, kicking the ball with the intent of forcing a deflection is against the spirit of the game and considered bad sportsmanship.  


All penalties will be breakaway style. The goalie must stay in their crease and the shooter must always be moving forward. 

Kick-ins / Corners / Goal Kicks 

There will be NO throw-ins, instead a kick in from the side will be taken where the ball went out of play. 

A goal may NOT be scored directly from a goal kick. All corner kicks and kick-in's must be indirect. 


  1. Goalies can use their hands ONLY when they are inside the lined goalie crease.
  2. When inside the goal crease, a goalie CANNOT pick up a ball with his/her hands if the ball has been played back on purpose by a player on his/her team. This includes all forms of passing and kick-ins. The only exception is if the player directs the ball back to the goalie with their head or chest - in this case the goalie CAN pick the ball up with his/her hands. A violation of this rule results in an indirect free kick for the other team at the spot where the goalie inappropriately used their hands.
  3. A goalie can play up to half field and can only use his/her feet outside of the crease.  
  4. There are no drop kicks allowed. 

Fouls, Infringements and Advantage

As with handballs, the referee will use their judgment to keep the game flowing where possible. If a foul occurs and they deem the advantage to be with the opposing team, play may continue, so always play to the whistle. 

If the ball strikes the referee, corner flag or goal post and remains in play, the game will continue uninterrupted as they are considered part of the field of play. When in doubt, play to the referee's whistle. 

Slide Tackling

Even if contact is made with the ball first, slide tackling is not allowed under any circumstances. As well, no players (with the exception of the goalie) can slide to block a shot or pass at any time.  The act of sliding is only permitted to reach a cross or to keep a ball in play but this must NEVER be done in close proximity to other players. 


To score a goal, the ENTIRE ball must pass over the goal line.  The referee will have the final say on any disputes.


If a game needs to be recorded as a forfeit (such as not being able to make the game etc), then a 3-0 score will be awarded to the other team.


There are NO off-sides. 

Discipline: Yellow & Red Cards

A yellow and red card system will be in place to issue punishments to players for various offences.  The rules governing which cards are issued under which circumstances are listed (but not limited to) those below.

Yellow Card (Caution-able Offences) - The referee issues a yellow card for reckless fouls and for the following offences:

(a) Deliberate Handball or Handball by a Goalkeeper (unless denying a clear goalscoring opportunity);(b) Endangerment; (c) Unsporting Behaviour(d) Dissent; verbal abuse directed toward the referee or coordinator.(e) Provoking Altercation: Making physical contact with an opponent (e.g., pushing or poking), short of fighting, or using the ball in so doing

Red Card (Ejection-able Offences) - A person receives a red card for fouls and offences described directly above, which the referee considers violent or use of excessive force, and for:

(a) 2nd Yellow Card;(b) Elbowing: Intentionally elbowing an opponent;(c) Vicious Slide Tackling: A tackle from the side or from behind directly into one or both legs of an opponent, seriously endangering him;(d) Fighting;(e) Leaving Team Bench or Penalty Area to engage in a fracas or confrontation with the opposition or a Game Official;(f) Extreme Unsporting Behaviour: Committing particularly despicable behaviour, including(g) Spitting at an opponent or any other person;(h) Use of extremely abusive language or behaviour toward a Game Official;(i) Aggressive physical contact with a Game Official in dissent;(j) Deliberate handball or foul that denies a clear goal scoring opportunity;

Time Penalties - The following time penalties apply to infractions for which a card is issued (subject to further action by the Administrative Authority).  During the time penalty teams must play short.

(a) Yellow Card: 2 minutes for a Yellow Card;(b) Red Card: The player will be dismissed/ejected and not allowed to return to the game. The team must play short for 5 minutes with the offending player being ejected:  any player receiving a Red Card will take no further part in the game and will, depending on the circumstances, be banned from a number of subsequent games or dismissed from the league entirely. Note - any player receiving a red card must also leave the facility immediately. [A red card will mean that the team must play short for 5 minutes]

Time penalties are assessed from the time that play restarts after the infraction occurs. All time penalties are absolute and will run for the full duration of the penalty regardless of how many goals are scored in that period.

Discipline: Suspensions and Penalties

Players who have been issued a red card/dismissed will be subject to the following penalties. The league reviews each incident individually and reserves the right to reduce or apply additional penalties in the event of situations involving extraordinary circumstances. All red cards carry a minimum of at least one game suspension. If you receive a red card, you will not be eligible to participate in the next scheduled fixture for that team. No appeals will be heard.

Receiving a second yellow card in the same match: 1 Game Suspension 

Denying an obvious goal scoring opportunity: 1 Game Suspension

Abusive language, dissent, or gestures directed towards a League Official: 1-3 Game Suspension

Unsportsmanlike Conduct: 1-3 Game Suspension  

Serious Foul Play: 1-5 Game Suspension

Violent Conduct (Spitting, Striking, Kicking, Fighting, Threatening, Extreme Verbal Abuse against an opposing player): Minimum 3 game suspension to permanent suspension depending on severity of offense.

Violent Conduct against a League Official (Aggressive Physical Contact, Spitting, Threatening, Extreme Verbal Abuse): Minimum 6 month suspension to permanent suspension depending on severity of offense.

Team Misconduct: Any violent acts or other behaviour that is detrimental to the reputation of the league committed by teams, large groups of players or supporter(s) will result in blanket suspension and or expulsions. The league reserves the right to retain team fees in instances deemed appropriate.

Receiving a second red card in a single league season that has not been issued for a serious offense: Additional 1 Game Suspension applied to the initial suspension. 

Receiving a third red in a single season: The league will review the player's disciplinary history as well as the circumstances before issuing a suspension.

Change Theme
Are you sure?