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Bourne Youth Soccer Association

Bourne Youth Soccer Association


Rules – Bourne Youth Soccer Specific

Under 6 Rules and Guidelines

BYSA By-Laws

Recreational Program Rules and Guidelines

About the Laws of Soccer:

Bear in mind, as you watch the game of soccer, that the seven most important words in the law book are “If in the opinion of the referee…” Robert Burt, our Referee Coordinator, compiled the following condensation of the soccer laws.

A full set of the FIFA Laws of the game are available on-line at You may contact a BYSA Director to obtain a copy.

General Information concerning the rules of soccer and the bylaws of the Bourne Youth Soccer Association

  1. Players, coaches and parents are urged to always be positive and cheer good plays. Never be negative towards opposing players, coaches or officials. Adults should refrain from arguing with coaches, officials or other spectators on or around the field where teams are present. These discussions should be taken up with BYSA or the League governing the match. Questions or comments for coaches or officials should be held until after the match. After all, nothing said during the game will affect play or decisions that have already happened.
  2. Spectators are to remain on the side of the field opposite the Team’s bench area and not stand behind the goal line.
  3. Generally only one coach and one assistant is allowed in the Team’s bench area. No spectator or coach shall stand behind the goal line.
  4. The Team’s bench area may be outlined on the field but if not the Team is allowed about twenty yards to occupy along the touch (side) line and no one except substitutes shall go within ten yards of the midfield line. Also the coaches and teams shall not go within ten yards of the top of the Penalty Box.
  5. The Laws of Soccer list what items of uniform and equipment must be worn. Beyond that it is the decision of the Referee to allow or disallow other items of clothing and equipment. The Referee will not allow anything dangerous to either the player or other players to be worn while on the field. Typically not allowed are; jewelry of any kind (taping is not sufficient), watches, hair retaining devices that are hard, casts of any kind or size, cleats other than soccer cleats (non-cleated shoes are okay), bandannas, hats except the keeper may wear one for shade for the eyes. The Referee probably will allow; sweat bands on the head or wrists (provided there are no knots), elastic bands or scrunchies, soft gloves, ace bandages, soft pads, elastic supports for knees, elbows or wrists. In cold weather, sweat pants or long sleeve shirts under the team uniform may be allowed as long as the colors are similar to the team colors. Eyeglasses are discouraged and some officials will not allow them at all. If they are worn, a retaining band should be worn that is snug to the back of the head or neck. Contact lenses are acceptable but players and parents should be aware that they are easily damaged or lost during play.
  6. BYSA has ruled that slide tackles are not allowed in instructional games. Please understand that in soccer, “Tackle” is a British term for stealing the ball from an opponent. It does not mean take down the other player as in U.S. football. Therefore “Slide Tackle” is to slide on the turf with the purpose of kicking the ball away from an attacking player. The attacking player may or may not fall down during this action. The rule is that the player doing the sliding must contact the ball first before there is contact between the players. The correct term used for this very effective tactic in soccer is to “Tackle the Ball”.
  7. “Handling the Ball” is another commonly misunderstood rule. Handling the ball is to intentionally play the ball using any part of the arm or hand from the shoulder down. It is punished by a direct kick by the opposing team. If in the opinion of the Referee the contact is accidental or incidental it is not an infraction of the Laws. Also if the hand and arm are held tight to the body it is not “Handling”.

Rainout Procedures

Rain does not automatically cancel soccer games. Games are only cancelled due to unplayable field conditions. In the event of unplayable field conditions due to rain, you will be notified of the cancellation at least one (1) hour before the scheduled start of the game. Age Group Director is responsible for notifying coaches, who are responsible for notifying players and parents. If the game is not called off one (1) hour prior to the scheduled start, players and coaches should proceed to the field. The referee shall determine the playability of the field at the scheduled start of the game.

In the event of thunderstorm, the referee or either coach has the authority to postpone or end the game if there is any perceived threat.

Parental Conduct

At games:
Parents are required to remain on the opposite side of the field from the teams. No one is allowed behind t’he goal lines or goal area. Cheer and encourage our players in a positive manner. There is no smoking and use of alcohol is forbidden. Teams and coaches are held responsible for the behavior of their fans, and coaches may be penalized for fan behavior.

At practices:
Parents are encouraged to help at practice time. Please offer your services to your child’s coach. Carpooling to practices and games is encouraged. Smoking and alcohol bans are in effect at all times.

In general:
Please remember that kids take their cue from the actions of the adults around them. Your example of good sportsmanship will do more for the kids than all the lectures in the world.

After games:
No one likes negative comments after a loss. Please try to focus on the positive aspects of the game and your player’s performance. Let the coach identify the team’s weak spots at a subsequent practice. The parent’s job is support of the player and the team.

Small-Sided Soccer Teams
BYSA has decided to play games with either 6, 7 or 8 players on the field for each team for the instructional fall season. U.S. Soccer, the national youth soccer organization, strongly recommends 6 on 6 for the fastest and best development of youth (and older) players. Fewer players on a smaller field means increased action and fun for everyone. 110 yards long and 60 yards wide is rather like asking senior players to play on a field 175 yards long and 100 yards wide or more, and 15 to 18 on a side. If YOU believe such a game would be ridiculous…then how do you expect young boys and girls to play the game under present adult conditions?” says Dr. John C. Pooley, in a recent US Soccer publication.

BYSA Rules of Play


  1. Current International Rules shall be in effect except as specifically stated otherwise in these Rules of Play.
  2. After the season has been declared open by the BYSA, all games played by the members of the BYSA shall be under the jurisdiction of this League.
  3. All teams under the jurisdiction of this League shall play under the rules of the game as approved by FIFA and as amended by these Rules of Play.

BYSA Fall Recreational Program: Official Rules

Law I – The Field

  1. Dimensions The field of play shall be rectangular – its length being not more than 60 yards nor less than 50 yards and its width being not more than 45 yards nor less than 30 yards. The length in all cases shall exceed the width.
  2. Markings
    1. Distinctive lines not more than 5 inches wide.
    2. A halfway line shall be marked out across the field.
    3. A center circle with a six (6) yard radius.
    4. Four corner arcs with a two (2) foot radius.
    5. Goal area: four (4) yards from each goal post and (4) yards into the field of play joined by a line drawn parallel with the goal line
  3. Goals Gr 1/2 Hockey goals.  Gr3/4: 6′ x 12′.  GR 5/6 & 7/8:  6′ x 18′.

Law II – The Ball

  1. Gr 7/8 shall use a #5 ball, Gr 1/2, Gr 3/4 and Gr5/6 shall use a #4 ball and U6 and younger shall use a #3 ball.

Law III – Number of Players

  1. Maximum number of players on the field at any one time shall be 6, 7 or 8 including the goalkeeper, according to the League.
  2. Maximum number of players on the roster should not exceed twelve (12) or as determined by the League.
  3. Substitutions: (Gr 5/6 & 7/8) teams may freely sub at goal kicks, halftime, after a goal is scored, and to replace an injured player. No substitutions on a free kick. Gr 1/2 & 3/4 teams shall make substitutions only during the referee declared stoppage of the clock.
  4. Playing time: Each player SHALL play a minimum of 50% of the total playing time, with equal playing time for all players being the intended goal of this program.

Law IV – Players Equipment

shall conform to FIFA with the following exceptions:

  1. Footwear: Tennis or running shoe or soft cleated soccer shoes.
  2. Shinguards: Mandatory

Law V – Referee

  1. Certified USSF referee
  2. Parent/Coach or assistant for U6
  3. All rule infractions shall be briefly explained to the offending player.

Law VI – Linesman

Not necessary

Law VII – Duration of the Game:

  1. Gr 7/8 shall play two 35 minute periods
  2. GR 5/6 shall play two 35 minute periods
  3. Gr 3/4 shall play two 30 minute periods with mandatory substitutions at intervals of approximately 10 minutes (clock is stopped briefly)  which will be determined by the referee.
  4. Gr1/2 shall play two 24 minute periods with mandatory substitutions at intervals of approximately 8 minutes (clock is stopped briefly) which will be determined by the referee.

Law VIII – Start of Play

Shall conform to FIFA with the following exception:

  1. Opponents must be at least six (6) yards from the center mark while kick-offs are in progress.

Law IX – Ball In and Out of Play

Conform to FIFA.

Law X – Method of Scoring

Conform to FIFA with the following exception.

  1. 2 Goal Rule for U8 Players: A player may only score two goals. If after a player has scored twice he/she scores again the game shall be restarted with a Goal Kick for the defensive team and the goal does not count.

Law XI- Offsides

Conform to FIFA with the following exceptions:

  1. There are no offsides for Gr1/2 or U6

Law XII – Fouls and Misconduct

Conform to FIFA with the following exceptions:

  1. Fouls shall result in a direct or indirect free kick with the opponents minimum  six (6) yards away.  Referee will determine whether it is to be direct or indirect.
  2. The referee/ coach /parent must explain all infractions to the offending player.
  3. Slide Tackles are not allowed. An indirect kick shall be awarded to the offensive team if the Referee determines the defensive player interrupted or interfered with the offensive play.

Law XIII – Free Kicks

Conform to FIFA with the following exceptions:

  1. Shall be classified as either direct or indirect.
  2. For indirect kicks, a goal may not be scored until the ball has been touched or played by a second player of either team.
  3. All indirect kicks within a goal box shall be taken from a point on the goal box perimeter line.

Law XIV – Penalty Kick

  1. .Conform to FIFA

Law XV – Throw-in

Conform to FIFA with the following exceptions:

  1. Gr 3/4 and below shall be allowed one re-take if the player commits a foul on the initial attempt. The referee shall explain the proper method before allowing the player to re-throw.

Law XVI – Goal Kick

Conform to FIFA with the following exceptions:

  1. Ball may be placed anywhere within the goal box
  2. Opponents must be outside the penalty box perimeter line

Law XVII- Corner Kick

Conform to FIFA with the following exception:

  1. Opponents must be six (6) yards away from the ball.

Game Misconduct

  1. Misconduct against game officials, coaches, players or spectators may occur before, during and after the match. Misconduct toward game officials may also occur during travel to and from the match and at later times when directly related to the duties of a game official as a referee. The Sportsmanship Review Committee shall address instances of game misconduct.

Sportsmanship Review Committee

  1. General: The Sportsmanship Review Committee (SRC) shall promote good sportsmanship within the BYSA and review issues of lack of sportsmanship, inappropriate conduct, unbecoming conduct, or violations of the Bylaws or the Rules of Play.
  2. Composition: The Sportsmanship Review Committee (SRC) shall be a standing committee and shall consist of the current vice-president (SRC chairperson), and 4 members of the Board of Directors of BYSA appointed by the President.
  3. Quorum: A quorum shall consist of the Chairperson and two(2) other members.
  4. Procedures and Authority: The Chairperson, when notified of a sportsmanship issue in writing and after fact finding to determine the validity of the issue, shall have the authority to hold a hearing of the SRC to review the issue. All SRC actions shall be reported in writing to the parties involved and to the Board of Directors. The SRC shall report any activity at the next scheduled BYSA Board meeting. The SRC shall have the authority to suspend an individual or team or take any other actions provided for in the Bylaws Any and all grievances, protests, personnel problems or allegations of game misconduct must be delivered, in writing, to the SRC. Upon receipt of a written complaint the chairman shall schedule a meeting of the affected parties at which time both sides will be heard. All decisions of the SRC are final.

Links to Additional Rules and Resources

A full set of the FIFA Laws of the game are publicly available on-line at or you may contact a BYSA Director to obtain a copy.



Section 1. NAME

1.1 The name of the organization will be: Bourne Youth Soccer Association


2.1 The objective of the BYSA is to provide the opportunity and training for boys and girls who reside in the town of Bourne and Joint Base Cape Cod to learn the game of soccer through the development of individual skills, fitness, teamwork, and fair play. 2.2 The philosophy of the BYSA is to provide an atmosphere of good sportsmanship within which the players and teams can compete, learn and enjoy the game of soccer. The BYSA will endeavor to keep the cost to players as low as possible so that all boys and girls who desire to do so can play. 2.3 Participation in the BYSA is open to everyone residing in the town of Bourne and Otis Air Base or a non-resident attending school in the town of Bourne without regard to race, creed, color, religion, or national origin. This is subject to be overridden by any laws of outside leagues or rules of tournament play.

Section 3. MEMBERS

3.1 Membership shall be open to all parents of players and, by invitation, any adult involved in the development and promotion of youth soccer. 3.2 At all General Meetings each member shall be entitled to one (1) vote. No proxy voting shall be allowed. 3.3 Each member of the Board of Directors has only one vote. 3.4 Members may attend meetings of the Board of Directors and participate in its discussions, at the discretion of the chair, but shall not vote. 3.5.1 Sportsmanship Review Committee The Sportsmanship Review Committee will be made up of: Vice President (Chair), 4 Directors appointed by the President. 3.5.2 Any member, who has a complaint against any other member about an incident in the current season, shall submit their complaint in writing to the President or Vice President. Within one week of the receipt of a written complaint, the chair of the Sportsmanship Review Committee shall convene a meeting of the Committee. Said meeting shall provide the opportunity for the aggrieved party to air their grievance and for the member to defend their actions to the Committee. The resolution of the grievance shall be voted by a majority of the Committee members present. If the Committee votes to recommend suspension or banishment, they will submit this as a recommendation to the Board of Directors. 3.5.3 Any spectator, coach or player may be banned for cause only, after reasonable notice and an opportunity to be heard by the Board of Directors. Cause only shall be construed to mean any act of physical violence, abusive language or unsportsmanlike conduct that is detrimental to the BYSA. Voting for the suspension of any member shall be voted by two thirds (2/3) of board members present at that meeting.


4.1 The governing body of the BYSA shall be the Board of Directors who will be voted (except for past president) by simple majority of members present at the annual meeting in July. Officers: President, Vice President, Treasurer, Secretary, Immediate past president, Registrar, and no less than 1 and no more than 18 other members 4.2 The nomination committee shall seek parents from all areas of town including Otis Air Base to serve on the Board of Directors. 4.3 The terms of members of the Board of Directors shall be one year and commence on the date of election. 4.4 The Board of Directors shall be empowered to: 1. Set policy of the BYSA, 2. Establish committees, 3. Elect committee chairpersons on recommendation of the president, 4. Discipline coaches, players, or parents, 5. Administer league finances, and 6. Administer all other league matters. 4.5 A member of the Board of Directors may be removed or suspended for cause only, after reasonable notice and an opportunity to be heard at a scheduled meeting of the Board. Suspension or removal of any member of the Board shall be voted by two thirds of the directors present and voting at said meeting. 4.6 Vacancies on the Board of less than 1 year shall be filled by a vote of the majority of the Board of Directors. 4.7 The Board of Directors shall meet at least four (4) times per year. The dates, time and location of said meetings will be established by the Board and duly announced to the general membership. 4.8 At any meeting of the Board, no less than three directors and no less than three officers shall constitute a quorum. 4.9 When a quorum is present at any meeting, a majority of directors present and voting shall decide any question, except where the bylaws specifically require a two-thirds (2/3) vote.

Section 5 OFFICERS

5.1 The President shall preside over all meetings, set the agenda for each meeting and recommend chairs of committees. 5.2 The Vice President shall preside at meetings in the absence of the President. 5.3 The Secretary shall record the minutes of all meetings. Said minutes will be presented at the following meeting. The Secretary shall handle all correspondence for the BYSA. 5.4 The Treasurer shall collect all registration fees and have charge of the finances for the BYSA. The Treasurer shall make a report of the financial status of the Association at regular meetings of the members and the Board. 5.5 The Registrar shall be responsible for all registrations.


6.1 The directors may designate certain persons or groups as sponsors or benefactors of the BYSA. Said sponsors or benefactors, as such, do not hold the privilege of voting.


7.1 Outstanding debts shall be paid promptly following certification by the treasurer that bills represent legitimate expenditures by BYSA. 7.2 All checks written in an amount over three-hundred-fifty dollars ($350) shall be signed by the any two of the following: President, Vice President, Treasurer, or Secretary. 7.3 In the event the organization is disbanded, any funds and assets which shall remain shall be turned over to the Bourne Recreation Committee for disbursement.


8.1 On or before the May monthly meeting of each year, the President shall appoint a committee of three members to be known as the Nominating Committee. Said committee shall consist of two members of the Board of Directors and one member at large. At their first meeting the Nominating Committee shall elect a chairman. The nominating committee shall solicit nominations for all offices. The duties of this committee shall be to receive nominations to any office and cause an official ballot to be prepared containing the names of all nominees for each office. Attendance at regular monthly meetings of present board members shall be considered as one of the strong criteria for re-nomination to the Board. 8.2 Consent of the nominee must be secured before his or her name is printed on the ballot.


9.1 These bylaws may be altered, amended or repealed at the general meeting in July or any special meeting of the members provided that public notice is given at least one week prior to the meeting. 9.2 A vote to alter, amend or repeal the bylaws will carry when two thirds (2/3) of the members present and voting vote in the affirmative.


Bourne Youth Soccer Association
PO Box 3062 
Bourne, Massachusetts 02532

Email: [email protected]

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