Five-A-Side Soccer (7 Key Rules)

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11’s rules are standard, but they’re slightly different for five aside. The games themselves are faster and more furious, meaning we need to adjust our tactics and style of play.

There is also the difference between the field and sometimes walls, so what are five aside soccer rules? Here we explain everything you need to know to succeed in a 5s game.

We can start from the fact that soccer, at its most basic form, may have its origin in China, around 300 BC, in a sport that consisted of putting a ball in a net using the feet.

womens indoor soccer game
Women’s Indoor Soccer Game

Difference from 11-A-Side to 5-A-side

Five-a-side soccer is a variation of classical soccer whose main difference is the number of players on the field 5 vs 11 of classical soccer.

Another substantial difference is that, depending on the discipline, you can play indoors or outdoor.

The objective of the sport is the same as in classical soccer, to put the ball in the opposite net using only the feet and the team with the most goals scored wins.

Similar plays are available within the game, such as penalty kicks, free kicks, or corner kicks.

Soccer ball in the sun - Is soccer year-round?
Five-A-Side Soccer Field

What are five-a-side soccer rules?

Five-a-side soccer does not have an official regulation endorsed by FIFA. However, each variation of five-a-side soccer has its own rules, and among these

7 Key Five-A-Side Rules

  1. Played with 5 players of which 4 are outfield players and one is a goalkeeper. The distribution on the pitch (who’s the defender or attacker) of the 4 outfield players is up to the team.
  2. The goalkeeper must wear a uniform different from the rest of his team.
  3. Only the goalkeeper can touch the ball with his hands inside his area.
  4. An unlimited number of substitutions at any game time with the referee’s authorization.
  5. For indoor soccer, the team opposite to the last to touch the ball will restart the game when the ball leaves the pitch limit, either air or ground.
  6. No offside rule.
  7. Sliding tackles are not allowed; they’re considered fouls regardless of whether there is no contact with the opponent.
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How long does a five-a-side soccer match last?

Although it may vary depending on the variation of the five-a-side soccer practiced, it’s normal for it to last 10 or 20 minutes.

It’ll always last considerably less than a classic soccer game since the pace is more intense and much more similar to basketball due to the dimensions of the playing field, which leads us to our next point.

What’s the five-a-side soccer pitch size?

In five-a-side soccer, it’s set as 20 meters as minimum length and 25 meters as a maximum length, 30 meters as minimum width, and 35 meters of maximum width.

As in classic soccer, there are some minimum and maximum measures that the pitch must have; they’re not fixed measures but ranges that are allowed in the regulation of each variation of this sport.

The boxes have a half-circle shape with a ratio of 6 meters from the center of the goal, which should measure 3.66 meters wide with a height of 1.22 meters. Five-a-side soccer can be played without a center circle.

This is very interesting because it allows soccer players to perform differently than they would on a classic soccer pitch.

Often there are more chances to do special tricks, leading to them having to develop their abilities in small spaces.

5 A-side Fun

This makes five-a-side soccer something unique in terms of entertainment because there is simply so much that can happen on such short notice, and it also leads to some very fun results.

Soccer is a sport that’s been defined by change and passion throughout the many decades it has existed and it’s very likely to continue doing so in the coming years.

Society is defined by our capacity to change, and we believe the game has benefitted from that notion.


Five-a-side soccer has been one of the most interesting and entertaining progressions of the game since its humble beginnings in China.

Five-a-side soccer is somewhat underrated in the large schemes of things when it comes to the beautiful game, as the British call it.

See also  17 Rules Of Soccer (Official Laws)

Overall, five aside, soccer is a great game to play with your friends while the weather is at its worst.

You get more action on the ball with the smaller surface and can score more goals. The main rule is to score more than the other team!


Sports have emerged that have earned their name and have even been assimilated by FIFA (the highest soccer organization in the world), such as beach soccer or futsal.

Both are examples of the five side soccer types, which is also the main topic of the article in question we’ve here.

History of Soccer

In the 19th century, the first official rules of soccer were created, which is why the creation of this sport is credited to them, despite the long-running debate about who should be credited, to begin with.

Regardless of whether its origin is Chinese or English, what can be said with complete certainty is that soccer has become the most popular sport in the world.

Popularity to the point that it’s estimated that half of the global population is fond of or practiced soccer.

It’s also the most diverse in terms of players; some of the most popular and successful players in the game’s history are from countries that perhaps are not known for their sports figures.

This is a testament to how influential and significant soccer has become.

From that point onward, we’ve seen soccer (or football, as you prefer to call it) change in many ways.

The FA and other soccer organizations are developing the sport to function in a much more positive manner and to make it a much more even and entertaining competition.

Soccer Analyst and Publisher at Soccer Blade | Soccer Blade | + posts
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Joel is a seasoned soccer journalist and analyst with many years of experience in the field. Joel specializes in game analysis, player profiles, transfer news, and has a keen eye for the tactical nuances of the game. He played at various levels in the game and coached teams - he is happy to share his insight with you.

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Soccer Rules FAQ

How long is a soccer game?

Soccer games include two 45 minute halves, which is 90 minutes of play. Those who have ever watched a game know that, like many sports, real-time is longer than the match time.
In real-time, the length of a soccer game varies immensely. At the bare minimum, it will be 90 minutes of play + 15 minutes of halftime for a total of 105 minutes.

What is offside in soccer?

The offside rule in soccer is to stop player ‘goal hanging’ – standing near the opposition goal. This also stops soccer from being a long ball game, balls hit from one goal to another.

What are yellow card offenses?

+ Charging an opponent – caution if reckless.
+ Holding an opponent – When the ball is in play and the holding continues.
+ Handling the Ball – When a player handles the ball to break up attacking play. If an attacker + uses their hand to attempt to score a goal.
+ Dangerous play – If a player makes an action that can risk an injury to another player.
+ Impeding the progress of an opponent – If a player holds another player back or blocks a player on purpose, that prevents an attack.
+ Breaking up an attack - where there is the possibility of creating a scoring chance.
+ Simulation - where a player tries to con a referee into thinking that they are injured in order to punish the opponent. If a player tries to make out that they have been fouled.

What are the red card offenses?

+ Serious foul play
+ Violent conduct
+ Spitting at a person
+ Deliberate handball – denying a goal-scoring opportunity
+ Denying an obvious goal-scoring opportunity
+ Offensive, aggressive, abusive language or gesture
+ Receiving a second caution

Soccer field size, size of goal, number of players and minutes played per age;

+ u17-u19 - Halves 2 x 45 minutes - Number of players 11 vs 11 - Goal Size 8 x 24 - Field size 50-100 by 100-130 yards
+ u15-u16 - Halves 2 x 40 minutes - Number of players 11 vs 11 - Goal Size 8 x 24 - Field size 50- 100 by 100-130 yards
+ u13-u14 - Halves 2 x 35 minutes - Number of players 11 vs 11 - Goal Size 8 x 24 - Field size 50-10 by 100-130 yards
+ u11-u12 - Halves 2 x 30 minutes - Number of players 9 vs 9 - Goal Size 7 x 21 - Field size 45-70 by 70-80 yards
+ u9-u10 - Halves 2 x 25 minutes - Number of players 7 vs 7 - Goal Size 6 x 18.5 - Field size 35-45 by 55-65 yards
+ u6-u8 - Quarters 4 x 10 minutes - Number of players 4 vs 4 - 4 x 6 Goal Size - Field size 15-25 by 25-35 yards

Thanks for reading our articles - we hope you've enjoyed them - have fun playing, coaching, and or watching soccer.

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