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U8- Guidelines


5V5 with a minimum of 4 to play With goalkeepers and referees.

Ball Size: 4

Game Duration:  

Four 10-minute periods. Half time break of 5 - 10 minutes.


For developing the feel of the game and having fun. At least 1 hr once per week.
Basic skills needed to be learned at practices.

Player Equipment:

Shoes and shinguards, covered by the socks, are mandatory at all practice and game activities. Soccer shoes, tennis shoes, or similar type athletic shoes are recommended. The type and condition of cleated shoes must be inspected for safety before use.


Coaching during the game should be held to a minimum. Let the players have the freedom to play with minimum interruption.


The field size for U-8 games is 50 yards long, 25 yards wide (max). Halfway line the width of the field, marked equidistant between the goal lines. Center circle with an six-yard radius in the center of the field. Corner arcs with a one-yard radius at each corner of the field. Goal area in front of each goal measuring 6 x 12 yards.


Max 18 x 6 feet


Allowed anytime ball is out of play-with the permission of the official .

Start of Play:

Kick offs are used at the beginning of each half and after each goal. All players must remain on their half of the field until the ball is kicked.


There are no offsides .

Free Kicks:

Direct free kicks for all fouls, with the opponents six yards away from the ball. Free kicks are awarded the attacking team inside the defending team's goal area should be taken from the nearest point on the goal area line in front of the goal. There are no penalty kicks. Referees will work cooperatively with the coaches and eliminate the need for cautions and send-offs. Do not show yellow or red cards

Goal Kick:

If the team attempting to score a goal kicks the ball over the goal line outside the goal posts, the opposing team puts the ball back into play with a goal kick. The Goal Kick should be taken within 2-3 yards of the goal and the opposing players must be 5-6 yards away from the ball.

Corner Kick:

If the team defending the goal last touches the ball before it crosses the goal line, the attacking team puts it into play with an indirect kick.


Throw-ins are awarded to the opposing team when a player causes the ball to entirely cross the touchline. Encourage proper throw-in but by redueing incorrect ones.

U-8 Officials:

AYSO certified U-8 Officials or higher are required for U-8 games. The U-8 Official should briefly explain any infringements to the player(s) and encourage proper play and sporting behavior. As with all games, every effort should be made to keep the game moving and free from stoppages for doubtful infractions. Let them play and enjoy.

Check here for the official AYSO gudielines regarding U8