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Rules of 5 a side football

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Five a side football is played in much the same way as regular football but with a few changes that are necessary for playing a smaller scale game. 5 a side football can be played either inside in a gym, sports hall or five a side pitch or as an outdoor game on a five a side pitch or open ground. Five a side football is a fast moving game played for a shorter period time than full size football. A 5 a side football game typically lasts between ten and twenty minutes each half.


The basic rules of full size football apply to 5 a side football and should be followed wherever possible. There is not an organising body that regulates the rules of five a side football, instead the rules of 5 a side football vary between different leagues and age groups, sometimes with the players simply agreeing upon the rules before starting a game. There is also a version of five a side football called Futsal developed in South America that is becoming popular and which has an organised rules structure governed by FIFA.


When playing 5 a side football, players should wear trainers and not traditional studded boots, although shin pads should still be worn. Two goals with nets and a football, are really all the equipment that is needed to play five a side football.

The 5 a side football pitch

Many five a side football pitches are surrounded by rebound boards that ensure that the ball never goes out of play. Playing surfaces include grass, board ľas in gyms, tarmac and Astroturf. 5 a side football is also often played outside in an area with no markings and no rebound boards.


The 5 a side football pitch should be between the maximum size of 42.65 metres length x 25.91 metres width and the minimum size of 16.76 metres length x 25.91metres width.


The centre of the 5 a side football pitch is marked and surrounded by a marked circle of 91cms radius. Sometimes, a half way line is marked across the pitch.

The penalty areas of a 5 a side football pitch are marked by a semi circle of approximately 7.62 metres radius drawn from the centre of each goal line.

The 5 a side goals

The goals can vary in size for 5 a side football but are much smaller than the full size game. Sizes of goal typically measure 4.88metres length x 1.2metres height for a senior game, 3.66 x 1.2 for a junior game but mini goal sizes are also acceptable, especially for children, and can be as small as 2.44 metres length x 1.2 metres height.

The 5 a side football team

The five a side football team is made up of four outfield players and a goalkeeper. The team can be set out as two forwards, two defenders and one goal keeper, or perhaps goalkeeper, one defender, two midfield players and one forward player. The goal keeper should wear something to distinguish him or her from the other 5 a side team members.


Because of the small size of the five a side football pitch, there is more scope for players to play in different roles , such as defending in one move, and attacking in the next. Five a side football is a fast moving game involving a lot of passing and dribbling. The long ball game is not an option because of limited space, players and the height restrictions of the game.

The rules of 5 a side football
The rules of futsal