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Quick Rundown on the Laws of the Game

Below are simple, clear explanations of the Spirit of the Law for each of the 17 Laws.

Law 1:The Field of Play- The field of play must be safe for players. The goals and markings must be adequate for the referee to perform his or her duties and should not be confusing to the players.

Law 2:The Ball- The ball must be safe for the players and of appropriate size and weight.

Law 3:The Players- Each team is entitled to begin play with a maximum of eleven (11) players and shall not continue play with fewer than seven (7). Exceptions in AYSO are permitted for small-sided matches (see small-sided matches in the AYSO National Rules and Regulationsdocument).

Law 4:The Players' Equipment- The players of each team must be safely equipped and easily distinguished from the opposing team.

Law 5:The Referee- The referee's duty is to ensure the match is safe, fair, and fun for the players.

Law 6:The Other Match Officials- The assistant referees help the referee in officiating the match.

Law 7:The Duration of the Match- The players are entitled to the entire designated playing time.

Law 8:The Start and Restart of Play- Neither team shall have an unfair advantage at the start of play.

Law 9:The Ball In and Out of Play- The ball remains in play even if an assistant referees has signaled, unless the referee has signaled it out of play or has stopped play.

Law 10:Determining the Outcome of a Match- The referee will award a goal when the entire ball enters the goal except as otherwise provided by the Laws of the Game.

Law 11:Offside- A player may not participate or interfere with play from an offside position.

Law 12:Fouls and Misconduct- Teams that fail to play in a sporting, fair and safe manner will be penalized.

Law 13:Free Kicks- Free kicks are to be taken without interference from the opposing team.

Law 14:The Penalty Kick- A penalty kick is awarded to the offended team when a defending player commits a direct free kick foul within his own penalty area.

Law 15:The Throw-in- When the ball completely crosses the touchline, it shall be thrown back into the field of play by a player of the team opposite to that of the player who last touched it.

Law 16:The Goal Kick- A goal kick is awarded to the defending team when the ball -- last touched by a member of the attacking team -- crosses the goal line , without a goal being scored.

Law 17:The Corner Kick- A corner kick is awarded to the attacking team after the ball -- last touched by a member of the defending team -- crosses the goal line, without a goal being scored.

Referee will also be monitoring our local rules

The referee may choose at any time to enforce these things so we wouldn't want people to be surprised. 
  • Parents and other fans should be on the same side of the field as their team (North and West for Home, South and East for Visitors) 
  • Spectators should not be closer than a yard to the touchline
  • Spectators may wish to sit on the touchline on the left side of the half or to the left of the build out line if they don't want an AR running up and down in front of them.
  • No spectators behind the goals or on the goal line. The referee may choose to allow people to take pictures from the goal line but such spectators should remain silent and certainly not coach their kid or yell at opponents
  • Spectators should cheer, not coach. Having too many voices directing the kids is confusing for the players. 
  • Spectators should respect the referees, all of whom are volunteers too, and acknowledge that it is their game to call. Spectators should not engage the referees directly and should not argue calls. Coaches may certainly have a respectful discussion with the referee after the game if they have a question about a call. Any issues or compliments regarding refereeing should be conveyed to the the Referee Administrator via email: [email protected]
  • Any abuse of youth referees (called 'PRO referees' in AYSO) is strictly forbidden. Youth referees are children too and deserve our thanks for volunteering.
  • The Referee may eject any spectator that is not complying with these rules or is otherwise disruptive. The Referee may end the game if an ejected spectator refuses to leave the field and surroundings. 
  • No dogs or other pets on the fields.



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AYSO Region 214 South Pasadena and San Marino

PO Box 214 
South Pasadena, California 91030

Email Us: [email protected]
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