What Happens if Soccer Players Fight? (What Happens)

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Soccer can be a fierce and competitive game with so much competition that the players get overzealous. On the outside, two players running after a ball may seem absurd, but to us soccer fans, we know the desire.

Games between rivals can strike up some of the most heated duals, but what happens if soccer players fight?

There is an old saying in England about soccer and rugby and the aggressive nature of the game;

Soccer is a gentleman’s game played by hooligans, and rugby is a hooligan’s game played by gentlemen.

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This reflects the nature of both sports for the English, the main precursors of both disciplines. The phrase comes from the fact that by regulation and its nature as a constant contact game.

This saying is becoming more untrue as the years go by and the game of soccer becomes more friendly on the field.

LONDON, ENGLAND FEBRUARY 26, 2020 Thiago Alcantara of Bayern and Ross Barkley of Chelsea pictured during the 2019.20 UEFA Champions League Round of 16 game Chelsea FC vs. Bayern Munich at Stamford Bridge
LONDON, ENGLAND FEBRUARY 26, 2020 Thiago Alcantara of Bayern and Ross Barkley of Chelsea pictured during the 2019.20 UEFA Champions League Round of 16 game Chelsea FC vs. Bayern Munich at Stamford Bridge

Soccer Fight

Soccer should have more confrontations and problems between players, which is more common in soccer, whose base is much thinner and, theoretically, would require less contact and fights.

The fierce part of the game has added to the popularity that soccer has gained worldwide compared to rugby, which has led to the incorporation of bad habits.

In short, despite having less contact between the players, soccer has more fights than rugby, ironic as it may sound.

Is Soccer Limited Contact?

Even though soccer is a limited-contact sport, it’s not completely necessary or mandatory that there be physical contact between the players but without excessive force.

it’s normal that there is contact between the players in certain situations, such as fighting for possession of the divided ball, in the corners and free-kicks, or the tackles.

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To be within the rules, the clashes between the players must be shoulder to shoulder, so if one pushes the other with another part of the arm, It’s considered foul.

In tackles, the foot must first contact the ball; if it touches the player’s leg, it’s considered foul.

Other tackles are considered foul use of excessive force – when a player uses more aggression than needed.

For corners or free kicks, the defender can get very close to the attacker if they do not hug him or take him somewhere in the body, preventing the attacker from moving.

Logically, any type of direct physical aggression is considered a foul.

Women competing for the soccer ball What happens if soccer players fight?

What happens if players fight?

If a soccer player touches other players’ faces in a confrontation, they’ll be given a red card. Any sort of aggression that starts a fight with be sent off.

Twenty years ago, the story was different. Some players had a small fight, and when the referee stopped it, they were only given a yellow card because it quickly calmed.

Now the rules are different. Any fighting isn’t tolerated. It’s a family sport and gives the wrong impression to fans.

If players fight, the teammate will go to their player’s aid. They’ll try and calm the situation and split the players up.

The referee will try and restore order on the field and give the aggressors yellow and red cards in order with the game’s laws.

In ice hockey, unlike the popular belief of those not fans of the sport, fights are punished, although not with the severity that’s applied in other sports.

Due to the competitiveness and aggressiveness that’s accompanied hockey since its inception.

It’s one of the few sports, leaving aside those of fighting such as boxing, where this type of confrontation is allowed.

Rules for Fighting

In soccer, it’s completely prohibited by the FIFA disciplinary code for expulsion for a red card and a penalty of 6 games without playing for fighting during a soccer game of any of the competitions that precede them.

If a player tries to separate fighting players or is simply attacked without returning aggression, they are not penalized in any way.

However, each federation establishes its own sanctions in its competencies and evaluates each case to define said sanctions.

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The regulation is not limited to confrontations between rivals; if two teammates fight during a game, they each receive a red card.

One of the most famous antecedents of these cases is the fight between Lee Bowyer and Kieron Dyer of Newcastle during a game against Aston Villa in the Premier League in 2005.

Both players were expelled and received several games of sanction in addition to an economic fine.

Newcastle players start fighting eachother!

What happens if you punch a referee in soccer?

In the same way that assaults between rivals or teammates, an attack on a referee has also sanctioned with a red card in the game and a sanction.

That would lead to a prolonged suspension that would surely exceed the sanctions of the cases of aggression mentioned.

Since both FIFA and the other federations try to protect referees, in a case of assault on one, the sanction can be months without playing.

How many players can be sent off in soccer?

We’ve talked a lot about the topic of red cards and expulsions; however, if for reasons of aggression, double yellow card, or any other game circumstance, five players from the same team are sent off, the game would be ended.

If the expulsion is from a player on the bench, it will not count for that case, and the game could continue; the rule would only apply to players who are part of the 11 on the field at that time.

The minimum number of players a team can have on the field is 7.

Referee Alan Wiley shows Nemanja Vidic of Man Utd a Red Card. Premier League match at Old Trafford between Manchester United FC and Liverpool FC on 14 March 2009. Manchester United 1 Liverpool 4
Referee Alan Wiley shows Nemanja Vidic of Man Utd a Red Card. Premier League match at Old Trafford between Manchester United FC and Liverpool FC on 14 March 2009. Manchester United 1 Liverpool 4

What happens if a soccer Game is abandoned?

Although here we’ve explained a possible cause of abandonment of a party, a high number of expulsions, the causes for this may be climatic conditions or, more recently, racism.

A game is considered abandoned when the 90 minutes of play is not completed for some reason, and depending on the cause, it can be repeated from the beginning.

The remaining time can be played as it happened, for example, in a game in 2005 between Real Madrid and Real Sociedad (it was played from minute 84).

The result can also be kept until that moment, or the team that did not commit the offense is given as the winner; the latter case may be due to improper alignment.

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Fair Play Rules in Soccer

Assaults in soccer are frowned upon and sanctioned with great severity since the message of the federations is based on a sport governed by the principles of Fair Play and in this sense.

These types of situations must be eradicated by treating them harshly to avoid recidivism and any feeling of contemplation.

The players involved in this type of situation have earned the “label” of being violent.

In many cases, they see their careers affected since not all soccer clubs want that image for themselves, especially in major clubs that try to uphold certain ideals.

One of soccer’s key aspects is holding your nerve and keeping your discipline.

Soccer is a team game and relies on 11 players on one side – without one member, it’s an uphill struggle. For more useful guides, see the articles below or visit our home page.

Soccer Analyst and Publisher at Soccer Blade | Soccer Blade | + posts

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

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