Rule Book – 5-a-side Soccer – Urban Sports
5-a-side Soccer

Rule Book

The Basics

Games consist of two 20 minute halves, 40 minutes in total with a 2 minute interval. Extra time will only be awarded due to a stop in play for injury.

Teams consist of a minimum of 5 players and a maximum of 8.

4 Players plus a goalkeeper may be on the field at once, with up to 3 substitutes who may substitute in for another player at anytime.

There are no offsides.

No tackling a player from behind. This results in a free kick.

No bicycle or scissor kicks allowed. This will be deemed as dangerous play, and a free kick will be awarded to the opposition.

The ball cannot be played by a player who is off his/her feet. Players must be back on both feet before playing the ball again.

No slide tackling, sliding for interception, or any form of sliding will be permitted. Sliding offences will result in a yellow card being issued.

No two-on-one tackles.

Remember, keep it clean, keep it fun!

Goalkeepers may not pick the ball up from a direct back pass. An Intentional direct back pass to keeper (and handling of the ball) will result in a direct free kick outside the box.

Goalkeepers may pick up a back pass if it is played off the rebound side walls (excludes back wall), or if it last came of the head or chest of a team mate.

Goalkeepers may only handle the ball in the demarcated goal box (half circle). The goalkeeper has 5 seconds (to be counted aloud by the referee) to distribute the ball once picked up. Failing to do so will result in a penalty spot kick given to the opposing team.

The goalkeeper may slide anywhere within his designated box. (No studs up).

The goalkeeper may not drag the ball from outside his box back in and pick it up, nor will a goalkeeper be allowed to place the ball down and pick it up again. Should either of these offences occur, a penalty spot kick will be awarded.

Goalkeepers are required to have 10 fingers on the ball when handling. Players may attempt to knock the ball out of the keepers hand should he/she not have two hands clearly securing the ball. The referee will indicate if a player has violated this rule, and award a free kick.

2-on-1 challenges are allowed in the box provided one of the two defending players is the goalkeeper.

The goalkeeper may score a goal from his/her penalty box, provided the ball was played on the ground. No throw-in goals are allowed.

Open Play

A player in possession of the ball may not carry that ball backwards for more than two steps in an attempt to win a free kick from a “challenge from behind”.

Players may not hold on to the nets or the side boards (wall) that surrounds the pitch. Failure to do so will result in a free kick being awarded at the spot where the offence was committed.

Outfield players may not handle the ball at any time. Handball includes the entire arm up to (but not including) the shoulder.

The Corners

If a player carries the ball into the corner circle, opponents may not tackle that player. The player has 5 seconds (to be counted aloud by the referee) before they must leave the corner circle or pass the ball. Upon leaving the corner circle, a player cannot return until another player has touched the ball. If the player remains in the corner circle for longer than 5 seconds, possession of the ball is overturned to the opposition, from the corner marker.

Out of Play

Two sets of lines are painted in each corner of the field – a solid line and a dotted line. An opposing player must stand behind (not on) the dotted line for the 5 second countdown, or until the ball is in back in play (if within 5 seconds).

If the ball is kicked out on the long sides of the pitch, the opposition continues play from where the ball went out.

If the ball is kicked out on the short sides of the pitch, a corner or goal kick is awarded.


No run up is allowed when taking penalties and the standing foot must be grounded at all times. A players non kicking foot is placed next to the ball on the designated penalty spot, and the ball is to be kicked in that stance. The goalkeeper is not allowed to move off his/her goal line until the ball has been kicked by the penalty taker.


Green Card:

“Cool down” – Player must exit the pitch for 1 minute before being allowed to re-enter the game.

Yellow Card:

The player is suspended from the game for 5 minutes but may be substituted by a off-field teammate.

Red Card:

The player is suspended for the remainder of the game with possibility of a further ban. Team plays with a player down for the remainder of the games time.

Free Kicks

During a free kick:

  • The opposition player(s) must be a minimum of 2m away from the ball. Only a one man wall will be allowed.
  • The player taking the free kick has 5 seconds (to be counted aloud by the referee) in which to do so or play will be reversed.
  • The player may shoot for goal directly.
  • The player cannot pass the ball to himself and continue with play, he must pass to a team mate.
  • The player cannot use any wall to pass to himself from a free kick.
5-a-side Leagues

Terms and Conditions for Teams and Players:

1. Fees and Payment
  1. If you will be paying for your season upfront, please note the cost is R2800 (This includes 9 league games). This payment must be made within the first week of the league start date. Only the full payment of R2800 will make your team eligible for the discounted rate. After week one, ANY additional payments will result in a credit to your account but WILL NOT count towards the season discount. It is your responsibility to confirm if you are paid in full.
  2. ALL TEAMS, regardless if you are taking up the upfront discount or choosing to pay game by game or making payment via EFT must make full payment for the first night’s game (R350) before you will be allowed to play.
  3. PAY BEFORE YOU PLAY. Teams who have opted to pay per game must collect a token from the league manager on the night before the scheduled kick off time. The game clock will activate promptly at the scheduled time regardless of whether your team is ready or whether your team is waiting on players to arrive. For every 5 minutes delayed, the opposition will be awarded 2 goals. Failing to show by half time will result in a 10-0 forfeit against your team and your team will be liable for the full game fees.
  4. No outstanding balances will be carried into new seasons. All outstanding balances must be settled on or before the final night to secure entry for the next league.
2. Game and League Rules
  1. Please familiarize yourself with our online 5-a-side rule book by clicking here. It is your responsibility to familiarize yourself and your team with our rules before you arrive for your first game. No further explanations will be provided.
  2. Please note team captains will be required to sign off your game score sheet with the referee and acknowledge the final score. In the spirit of fairness, NO changes will be made once this has been signed off.
  3. Should you have a query regarding the tracking of your goals, please email and include all relevant information. We will then investigate and respond to you within 48 hours.
  4. As this is a competitive league structure with cash prizes, in the spirit of fairness all teams who win their division will be promoted to the next division at the start of the new season (if a higher division exists). Teams who finish last in their respective divisions will also be relegated to a lower division (if a lower division exists). Please note no exceptions will be made.
3. Fixtures, Game Times and Amendments
  1. All fixtures are maintained on our website
  2. It is your responsibility as captain to make sure all players are aware of the fixture times.
  3. Games start promptly at the specified time, and each 5 minute delay results in a goal for the opposition. Please inform your players regarding this rule.
  4. In the spirit of fairness, each team is allocated the same amount of equal game time slots across the 9 week league. Time slots will vary from week to week. To keep this fair we unfortunately will not be able to make adjustments to allocated time slots for teams and thus the drawn up fixture list and game times are final. Game start times vary between 18h30, 19h15, 20h00, 20h45 and 21h30. Please familiarize yourself and your team mates with this before committing to a league. Accepting the terms below means you acknowledge this point.
  5. Only 1 reschedule per season is allowed, and this must be made 24hrs before the game. No further fixture changes will be allowed for your team for the season. Please note you may NOT reschedule the first or last game of the season.
  6. The start time for postponed games may vary from the original time slot.
  7. If you and your team cancel on the day or do not show up, you will be liable for a full game payment (R350) and lose the game 10-0.
  8. Should your team forfeit any games, you will no longer be eligible for prizes at the end of the season
  9. If your opponent’s forfeit or reschedule you will be offered a friendly at a discounted rate.
  10. Should your opposition forfeit, your team captain will be allowed to nominate one player number to receive a goal tally of up to 3 goals.
4. Early Exit of the League
  1. Should your team withdraw from the league at any stage your team will be liable for the remainder of the “FULL” league fees. This applies to teams which are removed from the league due to NON payment or fighting and abuse (see below).
5. Fighting and Abuse
  1. Any fighting or abuse towards other players, spectators and our REFEREES and staff will not be tolerated. Any physical violence will result in an immediate BAN for your entire team from Urban Sports. It is the responsibility of a team and its players to keep each other in-line and avoid being banned collectively. Any player who brings harm to another player, spectator or Urban Sports representative will be held liable and may face criminal charges. All action on and off the field is monitored using CCTV and this may serve as evidence of such offences.
6. Player Registration (Goal Tracking)
  1. At Urban Sports we track goal scorers throughout each league night. How this works is each player is assigned a unique number which remains theirs forever (regardless of the team you are playing for). When you score, the referee will ask for your number. You can view these stats on our website. It is your responsibility to register your team mates (or forward on the instructions to your players) on our website for players: Without a number, no goal tracking will be made against names on the night, so for new teams we suggest this is done before you arrive for your first game. We appreciate your understanding.
7. Prizes
  1. Only teams with a ZERO outstanding balance and no forfeits for the season will be eligible to receive their league prize should they top the log. Please note this also applies to individual prizes such as golden boot winners, your team will need to have a zero balance in order to receive your prize.
  2. Teams may not offset their outstanding balance with any individual or team winnings. You must have settled your balance (if any) on the final night of the league.
  3. Prizes Per League and Division (As of 2019/11/18)
    1. Winning Team:  R1000 discount towards your next season + 8 team medals.
    2. Runner Up: R500 discount towards your next season.
    3. Top Goal Scorer: R500 cash back (or discount towards team).
8. Safety of your belongings
  1. Please keep all valuables secured with friends who are spectating or within your vehicle. We advise against leaving anything in bags on the side-lines unattended as theft may occur.
  2. We have our own Security Guard in the bottom parking lot, where we suggest all teams park their vehicles.

Win: 3 Points

Draw: 1 points

Lose: 0 points

At the end of a league season, the top 2 teams within each league are promoted up a division, and the bottom 2 teams relegated down a division.

General and Facility Rules

Players must adhere to the Game Rules.

Metal studs a Metal studs are STRICTLY prohibited. Only plastic and rubber studs, or preferably artificial turf/astro turf boots will be allowed.

No playing barefoot.

We recommend that all players wear shin pads, although this is not compulsory. Urban Sports will not take any responsibility for injuries caused to players not wearing shin pads as it is understood that this is the individual player’s own decision.

The wearing of any form of visible jewellery (including watches) is not permitted during play.

Players are encouraged to arrive early and make use of the Urban sports change room located inside the building across from the playing fields.

Strictly no alcohol is to be brought on to the Marks Park or Pirates Sports Club premises. There is a fully licensed bar available for players and spectators to make use of. Players may not consume alcoholic beverages during their matches.


We have a ZERO TOLERANCE policy towards ill-discipline and it will in no way be accepted at Urban Sports.

Fighting, racism, threatening and/or intimidating behavior towards referees, players, spectators or management will NOT be tolerated! Should this not be respected, it may result in a permanent ban from Urban Sports for the guilty player or his/her team.

Should abuse by the same players or teams persist that player or team will permanently banned from Urban Sports premises.

Players and spectators are encouraged to promote “Fair Play” and show good sportsmanship.

Always respect the match officials’ decisions. Offenders will be cautioned, and should this continue, will be asked to leave the league.

Any misconduct whatsoever at Urban Sports Marks Park or Urban Sports Pirates Arena will be dealt with by management accordingly.

Urban Sports, its management and employees will not be held liable for any injury, loss, theft or damage suffered by any players or visitors at any of the Urban Sports premises.

Players or visitors will be held liable for any intentional or malicious damage done to the property or facilities at the Urban Sports premises

Urban Sports reserves the right to amend or relax any of the above rules as they deem necessary.

Teams with a valid complaint against a match official must be put in writing within 48 hours of the match taking place. The complaint should be addressed to our general manager at Urban Sports and emailed to info[at]

League Fixtures and Standings