Tournament Rules

Academy Challenge


The tournament rules shall be in accordance with USYSA/ FYSA except as modified and approved herein.

This Tournament is open to all affiliated teams affiliated under USSF.

It shall be the responsibility of each State Association, to certify the eligibility of its competing teams and to provide such teams with a certified copy of the roster, permission to travel and proof of insurance.

Roster Sizes will coincide w/FYSA rules with as many as 10 players being allowed on your official roster. A roster of the players must be given to the ref/official before each game.

The maximum number of guest players allowed on a team shall be four (4).

Roster submitted at registration is FINAL roster. No other players may be added or deleted  to Roster

After registration. Team Managers are to check Rosters when returned from Registrar to make sure

Players on Roster are correct.

All players must possess a current season player pass card from their affiliated organization. Passes must be verified, photo attached, laminated with state registration number and date of birth. Players may play on only one team during the tournament. No switching of teams will be permitted.

The maximum number of rostered players on any one team is as follows:
U8        roster sixe 10 players

U9/U10 roster size 10 players

Age classification will follow a calendar year beginning August 1 and ending July 31 as set by FYSA guidelines (www.fysa.com).

Tournament Officials shall conduct all credential checks:
At initial registration check-in and at the field prior to each game referees shall check in players off the official game roster provided by the coach. The roster is to be retained by the referee.

In no event will a player be allowed to participate who has not been certified by the Tournament credentials committee. A player who arrives late at the playing field after the pre-game procedure may enter the game once the game’s official(s) verify the player is eligible and with the permission of the center referee.

Each manager/coach or assistant must have a valid coach’s pass and should be listed on the roster. If a manager or coach is ejected, an assistant may conduct the team. If the assistant is also ejected, or if there is no assistant, the game will be forfeited. In no case will a team be allowed to participate without a properly registered coach or assistant.

All games shall be in accordance with the FIFA “Laws of the Game”, except as modified below. Competition sanctioned by this association shall abide by the “Laws of the Game”, along with any modifications or regulations of the association. Players nine (9) and under, and ten (10) and under must play under the rules of the Developmental Program - modified playing rules for 10U, 8U and 6U, except as modified below:

 All Teams

                        Each team is limited to three (3) coaches on the bench, all of which must be listed on the team roster. In no   

                          case will a team be allowed to participate without a properly registered coach or assistant

Law I: Field of Play

U8 U9 and U10 must play under the auspices of USYSA and FYSA in accordance with the rules of the Developmental Player Program Playing Rules for U9 and U10.

Law II: The Ball
U8, U9, U10, - Size #4 (25-26 in., 11-13 oz.)
Law III: Number of Players

U8  six (6) per side (as modified per Developmental Player Program)

U9-U10 six (6) per side (as modified per Developmental Player Program)

Substitutions: Shall be unlimited. . Unlimited substitutions shall be allowed in each game. The substitute shall enter only at the center line.

Substitutions may be made only upon proper notification of the referee ..
a. Prior to a throw-in by your team
b. Prior to a goal kick by either team c. Prior to a throw-in against your team, when your opponent is substituting
d. After a goal by either team
e. After an injury, by either team, when referee stops play
f. At the beginning of the second half or overtime periods

Law IV: Player Equipment
Player equipment must conform to FIFA Rules. Shin guards will be worn (under the socks) by all players. Players wearing a permanent orthopedic cast shall not be eligible to participate in any game.
Soft braces can be worn if:

a. The player has a written statement from a physician, stating he/she feels the brace is necessary and that no further injury is likely to occur to the joint that is supported by the brace;
b. The parent has signed a waiver to free FYSA from any claim against FYSA or its insurance company in case of further injury to the joint protected by the brace.

Teams will wear uniforms of matching design and color with a minimum of six (6) inch numbers affixed to the back of the uniform shirt. No two players may have identical uniform numbers while both players are playing on the field at the same time. In the event of similar team colors, the designated home team will be required to change to a color accepted by the referee.

Law V: Referees
Referees are required to submit a completed, official game report to the Site Director containing any information relating to any game incidents involving players/coach, spectator misconduct, or injuries.

a. Referees will not be paid before any required post game reports have been submitted.
b. In the event the assigned referees fail to appear and the assignor and/or site director fails to provide a replacement, the senior assigned assistant referee shall assume the duties and shall find an alternate assistant referee. The game will be played as scheduled and will be deemed official.


Law VII: Duration of the Game
The duration of the game will be as follows:

U8  2 x 20 = 40……………….N/A direct to pk
U9- U10 2 x 25 = 50…………N/A direct to Pk
** modification**

A.      For U8 & U9 ages, once a team is behind by 3 goals, that team may choose to ADD an additional

Player on the field, making that 7 players on the field. Once goal difference is back to below 3 goals, the team must  reduce number of players back to 6 players on the field. This ruling is NOT the referees to control. Coaches must bring goal differential to the referees attention.

B.      Mercy Rule

In order to combat over zealous coaching, a 10 goal mercy rule  will be in affect.

Once the goal difference is more tan 10 goals after the first half of play, the game will be called and deemed complete.

Score will be posted as 4- 0 as in accordance with rule #8. (4 goal max for each game)

In any FYSA sanctioned match a break will be given at the midpoint of each half of regulation time and at the end of each overtime period (if played) for player hydration. This break will be given at a normal stoppage of play and it is mandatory for any FYSA sanctioned match during which the air temperature is or is expected to reach eighty-five (85) degrees.
Violation may result in charges under FYSA’s Code of Ethics.

Overtime periods will only be used for deciding winners in final rounds. Teams may be requested to move to special Penalty Kick area so that the next scheduled game may continue. Special Penalty Kick referees may be used.

Penalty Shoot Out Procedure in accordance to FIFA guidelines.

Law VIII - Law XVII: No Change

Players, reserve players, managers, coaches and fans are expected to conduct themselves within the letter and spirit of “The Laws of the Game”. The Site Director has the authority and the responsibility to remove any person(s) from the tournament for abuses of conduct, in addition to any specific disciplinary action brought about by any other authority. In addition to good manners, these rules will apply to this tournament:

a. The Site Director will designate one (1) sideline to be for the sole use of the players listed on the game roster and two (2) manager/coaches from each team, with one team occupying one (1) side of the midfield and one (1) team the other. While the game is in progress, the manager/coach and the reserve players must remain on their respective benches and may not roam the sidelines.
b. The Site Director will designate the opposite sideline for the spectators.
c. The manager/coach is responsible for the behavior of fans and the referee will have authority to warn and ultimately send off, any coach whose fans behave in an abusive or disruptive manner.

a. Referees will return player passes to the Site Director along with a completed game report and any red card reports.
b. The manager/coach of each team will confirm the score with the Site Director by signing the game report and collect passes after each game, except for those participants sent off (if any).
c. The manager/coach of both teams will ensure their respective sidelines areas are clean and that all trash is in containers.

The Tournament Committee shall have a Discipline Committee of no less than three (3) members. The Discipline Committee will review and rule on all reports of unacceptable conduct by players, managers, referees, spectators, etc. using the FYSA standards as set by Rules Section 502.
a. All players, manager, coaches shall be subject to FYSA Section 502 - Discipline and Sanctions.
b. A player or manager/coach ejected will have an automatic minimum of one (1) game suspension regardless of the cause of the ejection.
c. Depending on the severity of the unacceptable conduct, the Discipline Committee may recommend the suspension of up to the duration of the tournament with further disciplinary action by the appropriate state or national association. The Discipline Committee recommendations must be available to the affected parties no later than prior to the next scheduled game.
d. At the conclusion of the tournament, passes will be returned to the coach (even if suspension has not been completed). A complete report will be sent to the appropriate State Association within seven (7) days of the conclusion of the tournament for possible further discipline.


In group play, there will be no overtime games. Standings in a group will be determined by:

Game Points: 3 points for a Win 1 point for a Tie 0 points for a Loss.

If Two Teams Tie:

Starts with tie breaker number 1and proceed through each level, as needed to determine a winner.

1.        Head to head result

2.        Net goal differential, maximum of four (4) goals per game

3.        Most goals scored, maximum of four (4) goals per game

4.        Least goals allowed, no maximum

5.        Minus 1 Game Point for each Red Card/Send-off

6.        Penalty kicks* in accordance with FIFA “Taking of Kicks from the Penalty Mark.”


*If both teams are to advance to the playoff rounds a coin toss will decide the higher seed in lieu of penalty kicks.

If Penalty kicks* in accordance with FIFA “Taking of Kicks from the Penalty Mark.” is required to determine the winner for advancement after steps 1-5 still result in a tie, penalty kicks will be taken thirty (30) Minutes before the scheduled start of the elimination game or earlier if a mutually convenient time can be agreed upon with representatives of both teams and the Tournament Director.

If more than two teams are involved in a tie, tie breaker number 2 (except in the case of example 3) will be used first to rank the teams. If teams are still tied, tie breaker number 3 will be used to rank the teams, and so on until a tie is broken. Once a team has been ranked higher or lower, the tie breaking procedure begins for the remaining tied teams with number 1. If more than two teams are still tied after tie breaker number 5 a coin toss will be held with the odd team sitting out. The other two teams will then take kicks from the mark to establish a winner. The winner of this will then play the team sitting out, (kicks from the mark) the winner will advance. When all teams will advance to the playoff rounds a coin toss, as sequenced above, will decide the team’s seed in lieu of kicks from the mark.

Note: In groups where one team plays one more game than the others in the group due to an uneven number of teams in the bracket, game points, net goal differential, goals allowed and goals scored will be weighted to make them comparable to the other teams in the group playing only three games.
i.e. if Team A plays four games and Teams B, C, D, and E play three games, then Team A’s games will carry a point value of .75 to give them a total weight equal to the other team’s games. For example:

Team A games = 4 total points 12 (X .75) = 9 points
Team B " 3 " " 7 = 7 "
Team C " 3 " " 9 = 9 "
Team D " 3 " " 2 = 2 "
Team E " 3 " " 5 = 5 "
In the above example teams A and C would be tied for points and rules for tiebreakers would be followed.

9. Refund Policy
Any tournament that fails to return an entry fee and application within fifteen (15) days after notification that the team is not accepted, or within ten (10) days of withdrawal request of the application by a team prior to the acceptance of that application by the tournament, will be subject to an assessment fine not to exceed ten (10) times the original entry fee.

A.  Within five (5) days after notification that the team is not accepted by their application.

B.  Within five (5) days upon cancellation of the tournament.

C.  Within ten (10) days of withdrawal request of the application by a team prior to acceptance of that application by the tournament.

Any team that will not be permitted to play in the contracted age group shall have the option to withdraw and receive a full refund of all entry fees. All tournaments shall notify any participant not less than fifteen days prior to the beginning of the tournament if any age group advertised will not be offered.


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