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Deerfield AYSO - Region 1007

U12 Guidelines

Deerfield Region 1007 · Highland Park Region 891 · Lake Forest Region 163

NOTE: Inter-Regional play rules and directives supersede all local Regional rules and policies. AYSO National and FIFA Rules will be used, unless otherwise stated.

1 – Game Length

Games will be 60 minutes (two 30 minute halves). The clock will run continuously, except for a brief substitution break mid-way through each half. There will be a five minute half-time. If the game starts late, an equal amount of time will be deducted from each half in order to conclude at the scheduled ending time.

2 – Number of Players

Each side shall consist of 9 players on the field. All players shall, whenever possible, play an equal amount of the game.

To promote fairness and good sportsmanship, the coach of a team with an excess of 9 shall loan the coach of a team that has fewer than 9, a different player each quarter.

3 – Eligibility

To be eligible to play, each player must be currently registered with AYSO. The coach must have the player registration/medical release forms for each player on the team at all games and practices. Only players who are assigned to the team may participate in games. Players, including registered ones, may not be obtained from other teams or age-brackets/divisions, even if a team is short-handed. An additional player(s) may, however, be borrowed from the opposing team (see “Part 2 – Number of Players”).

4 – Uniform & Equipment

Each player must wear a numbered uniform in the same color combination of his or her teammates (except the goalkeeper). Shin guards are mandatory, and must be worn under the socks, next to the skin. The jersey must be worn tucked inside the shorts.

Footgear may consist of gym shoes or soccer-style cleated shoes. No shoes with metal cleats, toe cleats, or dangerously sharp cleats are allowed.

The team jersey must always be the outermost garment. In colder weather, players are permitted to wear extra layers of clothing under their uniform, without exposed hoods, snaps, or zippers. Any long leg coverings must be tucked in so that the team socks are clearly visible. No jeans. Soft knit caps and ski bands may be worn on the head for warmth. No caps with bills are permitted. Head cloths, scarves, “do-rags”, bandanas, and the like are not allowed.

Players are not allowed to wear jewelry of any type or construction on the field. Cloth bracelets, rings, pins, and necklaces are jewelry and are not allowed. Wristwatches and earrings of any type will not be allowed. Metal or plastic hair clips, and hard headbands are not acceptable. There will be no exceptions to these rules.

Eyeglasses and safety goggles are permitted. Mouth guards are allowed. Cloth sweatbands are acceptable, as are soft hair warps. Medical alert bracelets must be securely covered, preferably with tape.

5 – Substitutions

There are NO free-substitutions during the course of the game, other than for injury.

Approximately mid-way through each half of play, when play has been stopped for a dead ball situation, the referee will stop the game, BUT NOT THE CLOCK briefly to allow for substitutions. This is often referred to as the “quarter break.” It is for the purpose of switching/substituting players, and should last no more than a couple of minutes. Players who are NOT being substituted out of the game must remain on the field.

After 30 minutes of play, the Referee stops the action where the ball is being played for the “half time break.” This is for the purpose of switching/substituting players, allowing players to get drinks, and giving everyone a short rest. The break should last 5-8 minutes. Play resumes with a center-field kick off.

During the game, if a player is injured, the coach may (a) play the team short, in which case the injured player may return when ready AND the referee has given approval; or (b) substitute another player for the injured player, in which case the injured player is credited for playing that “quarter” and may not return to the game during that period.

A player bleeding from a wound must leave the field right away. The player may return only upon a signal from the referee, who must be satisfied that: 1) the bleeding has been stopped and 2) any blood on the uniform has been dealt with appropriately.

6 – Coaches

A maximum of 2 coaches are permitted for each team. All coaches and assistant coaches must: 1) be registered with AYSO, 2) have taken and passed the Safe Haven Course, 3) have taken and passed the U-12 Coaching Course, and 4) have been assigned to coach at this level by their home region.

7 – Referees

All referees must: 1) be registered with AYSO, 2) have taken and passed the Safe Haven Course, and 3) have taken and passed the Regional Referee Course.

If there is not a referee for a game, one coach or assistant coach from EACH team will need to referee one HALF of the game. No unauthorized volunteer or parent may referee a game.

The referee may provide limited and equal instruction to both sides, but no coaching is allowed.

Referees are to stop a game for bad weather immediately when thunder is heard or lightning is seen.

If there are no assistant referees, the referee should solicit coaches or adult volunteers from the spectators to watch the touch line on each side of the field. These volunteers should be reminded that they may not coach or otherwise provide instruction to the players on the field.

8 – Special Rules of Play

Referees should try to keep play moving. While the laws should be adhered to and fouls should be called, the referees should avoid stopping play for trifling fouls, especially those that are inadvertent, where no real advantage is gained, and where no one is hurt.

Special care should be taken to protect the goal keeper. Prior to the start of a game, the referee should firmly remind the players of two rules. First, any ball that has been touched by the keeper, and is still within his/her reach, is a “keeper’s ball” and may not be played. Second, players are never to charge the goal keeper.

Try not penalize players for “hand ball” fouls when they are protecting themselves from hard shots to the head.

U12 observes the offside law. Offside position and offside are not the same. It is NOT against the laws merely to be in offside position. It is against the rules to be offside (and be involved in the play).

Heading the ball is permitted, but not encouraged at the U-12 level.

Coaches are charged with making sure that they do not “run up the score” on a weaker team. In our games, good sportsmanship and keeping the game fun for all the players take priority over lopsided scores. Extra players are NOT permitted, even when the score becomes lopsided.

9 – Fouls and Misconducts

Any serious misconduct should be dealt with by speaking to the player directly, and involve the coach and parents if necessary. A player may be cautioned and a yellow card may be issued for such a misconduct.

A player may be issued a red card and ejected from the game for repeated offenses, or for violent conduct, serious foul play, or for foul/abusive language.

The Referee and coaches shall report all misconducts assessed during a game (i.e. yellow/red cards) to the local Regional Referee Administrator (RRA) and the two Regional Commissioners (RC) that day.

The RCs and RRAs of the two Regions will discuss any misconduct. A player who receives a red card during an Inter-Regional game may be suspended for the following game, or longer.

10 – Additional Rules and Directives

The team coaches are responsible for the conduct of their players and spectators. This should not be the job of the referee.

The use of alcohol and tobacco products is not allowed at any AYSO game. NO PETS of any kind are permitted at soccer matches.

Spectators are expected to abide by the rules of good sportsmanship. Spectators who fail to do this may be asked to depart from the field.

Coaches must remain behind the side touchline, in the “coaches’ box” (coaches’ technical area), which extends 10 yards from each side of the center line.

Parents and players (not currently playing) should be on the same side of the field. They must remain behind the spectator line, which runs parallel to, and 3 yards away from, the touchline.

No coaches or spectators may be behind the goal lines during games.

The coaches are responsible for remaining at the field until: 1) all players have departed and 2) all trash and odds & ends have been cleaned from the field.

11 – Staying in Touch with AYSO

All regions have telephone hotlines and division managers where messages can be left. Information about the regions can be found on the respective internet websites.

Hotline: (847) 604 – 1560

Hotline: (847) 433 – TEAM

Hotline: (847) 557 – AYSO

12 – Keep This in Mind

The purpose of inter-regional play is to provide an opportunity for the children to play soccer in a healthy environment. It is the responsibility of the coaches and referees to set an example for the players and parents. Sportsmanship is playing by the rules, winning without gloating and losing without complaining. Let’s be good sports! REMEMBER – We Believe: Kids FIRST, Soccer SECOND

13 – Game Cancellations

Soccer is played under all sorts of conditions, and games are usually not called off because of poor weather. However, in the event a game is to be canceled, the decision will be made by the Regional Staffs, not by the coaches on the fields. If a game is to be canceled due to weather (including unplayable field conditions), the home team coach is to call the visiting team coach at least two hours before the start of the game with the cancellation news. It is possible that games will be canceled at one field in the hosting Region while games are still played at other fields. The Division Managers will assist in distributing the information.

Deerfield and Highland Park fields utilize the Thor Guard Lighting Warning System.

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Deerfield AYSO - Region 1007

1400 Bayberry Lane 
Deerfield, Illinois 60015

Email Us: [email protected]
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