Website Manager

Culpeper Soccer Club

Culpeper Soccer Club

Ref Rules Recreation

CSC Recreation Rules


As of March 2023- Applies to CSC matches only!

The FIFA Laws of the Game govern our matches with the following additions and modifications:

  1. Unlimited substitutions by either team on any stoppage except free kicks (D or I) and corner kicks. Coaches may immediately substitute for a player who has just received a yellow card or for an injured player (play must be stopped).
  2. Coaches may add player for 5+ goal difference (add one at 5, add another at 6, remove as score difference drops below 5 or 6). Usually just U-8, but applies to all. 11 players max.
  3. Stoppage time should not be added to recreation games.
  4. For cold weather games, players can wear hats and gloves provided that they are soft.  Sweatshirts/jackets may be worn but they must be worn under the jersey.  If a sweatshirt/jacket has a hood on it, the hood must remain under the jersey




Ball Size



4 x 12mins; 2minbreaks,
5 min halftime

(min 3)


Coaches may be on field (out of way), no
goaltending, 4-yard distance on free kicks, no offside, ref may permit redo on bad throw-in.
See additional modifications below.


2 x 25mins;
5 min halftime

(min 5)


No slide tackles, No heading
See additional modifications below.


2 x 30mins;
5 min halftime

(min 6)


No slide tackles
No heading

U-14 and

2 x 35mins;
5 min halftime

(min 7)


All rules in effect


Key FIFA modifications that apply to CSC games only. 

** The following FIFA modifications apply to CSC U12 and younger games only **

Whenever the ball strikes a player in the head, play is stopped.  The proper restart depends upon whether the player deliberately played the ball with his or her head.  If deliberate, the proper restart is an indirect free kick to the opposing team.  If this occurs within the goal area, the indirect free kick should be taken on the goal area line parallel to the goal line at the point nearest to where the infringement occurred.  If the play by the head is deemed inadvertent, then the proper restart is a dropped ball.


** The following FIFA modifications that apply to CSC U8 games only ** 

Law 8 - The Start and Restart of Play: Conform to FIFA, with the exception of the opponents of the team taking the kick-off are at least four (4) yards from the ball until it is in play.

Law 12 - Fouls and Misconduct: Conform to FIFA with the exception that all fouls shall result in a direct free kick. The referee must explain ALL infringements to the offending player. No cards shown for misconduct.

Repeated fouls or misconduct can be handled by removing the offending player from play for a period of time to calm down or receive individual instruction from his/her coach/assistant coach/parent helper regarding correction of the repetitive foul/misconduct.

Law 13 - Free Kicks: Conform to FIFA with the exceptions that all kicks are direct and all opponents are at least four (4) yards from the ball until it is in play.

Law 14 - The Penalty Kick: No PKs, instead a DFK from the spot of the infraction.

Law 16 - The Goal Kick: The goal kick should be taken anywhere within the goal area. Opposing players must be outside the goal area AND at least four (4) yards away from the ball until it is in play. It is suggested that if necessary that opponents are in their own half of the field until the ball is in play.

Law 17 - The Corner Kick: Conform to FIFA with the exception that opponents remain at least four (4) yards from the ball until it is in play.

In addition:

  1. Goaltending is not permitted
  2. The only rule on goaltending is that a defensive player may not remain in the goal area (the single painted box around the goal) continuously.
  3. The guideline on goaltending is that a defensive player must react and respond to an advancing attack, not retreat to cover the goal. Put another way, the defensive player should play as if there were a goalkeeper in place behind him or her.
  4. There is no official sanction or discipline for goaltending. Speak with the coach to get the behavior to stop. Avoid coaching the players yourself.
  5. Coaches sometimes get wrapped up in coaching and fail to recognize that their position is intimidating or obstructing the players (standing next to goal, leaning on goal, in the traffic lanes). Kindly ask the coach to keep clear


** The following FIFA modifications that apply to CSC U10 games only **

Retreat line
The retreat line shall be clearly marked on the field at 1/3 distance of the field from each end. The Retreat Line will come into effect at two points during the game:

  1. At a goal-kick
  2. When the goalkeeper has the ball in his hands.

At these times, the opponent team is required to drop back behind the Retreat Line. The goalkeeper can then pass the ball to one of his teammates without the pressure of an opposing player nearby. For the case when the goalkeeper has the ball in his hands, he can pass, throw, or roll the ball to a teammate but he can not punt the ball. The goalkeeper is not required to wait until all opponents have moved to the retreat line before putting the ball back into play.

The ball is in play once it leaves the penalty area. All opponents must remain behind the retreat line and cannot cross the retreat line until the ball:

  1. Is touched by a player of the team releasing the ball OR,
  2. Leaves the field of play OR,
  3. Goes over the retreat line. (If the goalkeeper chooses to play the ball across the retreat line prior to the opposition crossing the retreat line)

If the goalkeeper puts the ball back into play before all opponents have moved to the retreat line, opponents can not start attacking until the ball leaves the penalty area.


  1. If the ball is not kicked directly out of the penalty area from a goal kick, goal kick is retaken.
  2. If a player who has taken a goal kick correctly, deliberately plays the ball a second time or touches the ball with his/her hand when the ball has left the penalty area before another player has touched it, an indirect free kick is awarded to the opposing team from the position where the second touch occurred (see Law 13 – Position of free kick).
  3. If the goalkeeper punts the ball, play should be stopped; the goalkeeper should be verbally cautioned and the game should be restarted at the spot where the goalkeeper punted the ball from by the goalkeeper.
  4. If a player crosses the retreat line to early, play should be stopped and the player should be verbally cautioned. Play should be restarting by the goalkeeper 

Game Day at CSC

Arrive for your game at least 20 minutes before the scheduled start of your game. If you are going to be late to your game, please let me know so I am not panicking trying to find someone to cover it.

If you are the center referee, check that the goals are secured with either sandbags (u10-highschool) or stakes (u8). If the goals are not secured, and you cannot secure them yourself, come find one of us. The games cannot start if the goals are not secured!

If you are the center referee you must also check in the players. All players must have the correct uniform, shin guards, and soccer cleats (no stub on the front).

If you have a problem during your game with a player/parent/coach being disruptive or rude during your game, you have the power to stop your game and come find one of us if you need us to deal with the person. You have the power to card any player or coach if they are verbally harassing you. If there is a parent who is causing issues, the first thing you do is talk to the coach. If the coach does not address the issue, or the coach addresses the issue and the parent continues, stop the game and come find one of us.

If you are a Center referee, you must submit your game reports to me by Sunday night. If I do not receive your game report, you will not be paid for the game!!!

Submit your availability for the next weekend by 11:59pm on Sunday night. If you submit your availability by that time, you are guaranteed at least one game the following weekend.

Laws of the Game 2024


Culpeper Soccer Club
145 W. Davis St. (Mailing Address: PO Box 1105), Office Hours: by appointment
Culpeper, Virginia 22701

Phone: 540-825-0886
Email: [email protected]

Copyright © 2024 Culpeper Soccer Club  |  Privacy Statement |  Terms Of Use |  License Agreement |  Children's Privacy Policy  Log In