Apex Sports Zone Sidney – Indoor Soccer Rules

Items not addressed under the following Apex Sports Zone Soccer Rules shall follow USSF laws of the game.

Referees:  Apex Sports Zone uses an outside referee assignor.  Therefore, referees appointed to officiate each game have complete authority and that his/her decisions on points of fact connected with the game are final.

The Players

Players/Coaches: No player may compete without a signed registration/waiver on file. Players under 18 must have a signature of a parent/guardian on the registration/waiver.   Apex Sports Zone reserves the right to deny registration to any player and reserves the right to remove a player from a roster.

Unpaid Teams/Players: The team or individual players may not participate until their balance has been paid in full.

Guest Player Policy: Guest players are permitted In High School and Adult age groups. “Guest Player” means anyone not on the teams’ officially registered and paid roster who fits the age/gender criteria for the age group. Guest players who are already registered in a current session but with a different team may participate at the cost of $10 per game. Guest players who are not registered to a team in the current session may participate at the cost of $15 per game and must complete a waiver form prior to participation. Any team found to have used a Guest player illegally – meaning had a player participate who was not on their roster and did not pay or did not execute a waiver, shall forfeit the game in question.

Forfeits/No Shows: Teams who do not have enough players to start a game at the scheduled time will immediately concede a goal to the opposing team. After two minutes, a second goal will be granted to the opposing team. After 5 minutes the game will be forfeited. All forfeits will result in a 3-0 loss recorded as the games’ result.

Number of Players:
U06 Divisions shall play 4v4, 4 field players and no goalie. (Minimum players is 3)
U08 Divisions and above shall play 6v6, 5 field players and a Goalkeeper. (Minimum players is 4).
All teams HS Age Groups and younger MUST have a person 21 years or older in their team bench. Limit of 3 coaches in the team bench area.

Competition Rule/Goal Differential: add one player per each 5 goals trailing, 2 extra players max.   All final game results will be listed at a maximum 5 goal differential, and will be listed as the official score.

Guaranteed Substitutions: shall be on request of the coach after a goal, injury, or any stoppage by referee he/she allows.


The Players’ Equipment

Jerseys: Teams should wear identically colored shirts. Numbered Jerseys are highly recommended but not required. In the case of a color conflict the Home Team (listed first on the schedule) must change or must wear scrimmage vests.

The Ball: U6’s will play with a size 3 ball. For ages U8 – U12 and it shall be a size 4 ball, for ages U14 and up it shall be a Futsal ball.

Shin Guards: Are mandatory for all age groups. Shin guards must be commercially manufactured, of the appropriate size, and cannot be altered.

Shoes: Indoor flats, turf shoes, gym shoes, or molded cleats are acceptable, metal cleats of any kind are not permitted.

Players with inappropriate shoes will not be permitted to participate.

Jewelry: Is not permitted in any capacity in any age group. Exceptions where jewelry is deemed not to be potentially hazardous to a player or opponent by the official are extremely rare and at the discretion of the official.


Duration of the Game

Periods (unless otherwise stated):

U6:   Two 18 Minute Halves
u8:    Two 20 Minute Halves
u10 and Older:   Two 25 Minute Halves

During Championship Week (the last round of games):
In divisions with an odd number of teams:    The 3 teams finishing at the bottom of the standings will play a round robin against each other and this will consist of 3 “halves” per the times above.
Example – u12 Division/Championship Week:
1st vs. 2nd – Normal game
3rd vs. 4th – Normal game
5th vs. 7th  – 25 minute game
6th vs. 7th – 25 minute game
5th vs. 6th – 25 minute game

Overtime: no overtime periods will be played unless otherwise noted.

Warm Up: Since starting games on time is such a priority for our teams and our staff, Apex recommends players stretch out WITHOUT a ball outside of the playing surface prior to play. Teams must be prepared to play at the referee’s indication and there is NO guaranteed warm up time between matches. A MAXIMUM of 5 minutes of warm up time MAY be granted at the discretion of the referee and the facility manager. Teams do not need to bring balls into the facility at all, as warm up time is limited, and absolutely no balls or other sporting goods are permitted outside the main playing field.


The Start and Restart of Play

Kickoffs: may be taken in any direction and are considered a direct free kick.  All kickoffs to start each half will be taken by the team attacking towards the scoreboard.

Superstructure Violations: (ball hits the ceiling/ceiling netting) Restart shall be taken from the restart mark in the middle of the white line at the attacking end.

Free Kicks: All free kicks resulting from a foul shall be direct free kicks as well as any ball that hits the ceiling net.

Goalkeeper Distributions: shall be taken by the goalkeeper, may be either thrown or kicked from any spot within the goalkeeper box, and must be played within 6 seconds of the goalkeeper controlling the ball.

Whistle Restart: is required for the following: Kickoff, Penalty Kick, Free Kick from the Restart Mark, after an injury, and to restart play after a Time Penalty is issued.

Switching Ends:   Teams will switch ends of the field at halftime.



The Ball In and Out of Play

Balls that go over side lines will result in kick ins and those that go over end lines will be deemed a corner kick or goal kick depending on who it went out on.

All kick ins are indirect.

Three-Line Violation: A ball kicked from behind a teams’ defensive white line which crosses the opposite white line in the air without touching a player or the ground shall be deemed a three line violation. Restarts for this offense will be taken from the restart mark in the middle of the attacking white line.


Fouls and Other Violations

Fouls: shall be as follows:

if committed against an opponent: kicking, tripping, jumping at, charging, striking, pushing, holding, playing dangerous, obstructing, encroachment, boarding, sliding tackle while opponent is near or on the ball, or spitting: if committed on the field of play: handling, or sliding tackle with no opponents near.

Goalkeeper Violations: 6-Second violate on will only be assessed for holding the ball, the goalkeeper may release the ball during play by throwing, kicking, drop kicking, or punting the ball.

Time Penalties: Time penalties shall result from any foul that the referee determines to be severe, blatant or tactical in nature, as well as in ALL cases described below under blue card offenses. In the case of a foul resulting in a time penalty, the referee shall show the offending player a blue card and a 2 minute time penalty will be given. The offending player will serve the time penalty unless it is the goalkeeper. Goalkeepers may be made to serve their own time penalty at the discretion of the referee.

YELLOW CARD Offenses: shall be automatically issued for the following: slide tackling with opponents near or in possession of the ball, violations which result in the denial of an obvious goal scoring opportunity, goalkeeper endangerment, boarding in any capacity, foul or abusive language, persistent infringement, and any other reason deemed appropriate by the official.  Players must leave the game for a total of 2 minutes and the team will play one player short for those 2 minutes or until a goal is given up.

RED CARD Offenses:  shall be automatically issued for a second yellow card offense in the same game, or serious foul play (includes any use of excessive force or brutality against an opponent when challenging for the ball. Examples include a dangerous slide tackle from behind, or an “over the top tackle” in which a player raises his foot so the cleats could hit a player, or a two footed tackle that takes down the opponent, violent conduct, spitting at anyone, deliberately touching the ball with a hand in order to prevent a goal or to deny an obvious goal scoring opportunity (such as to prevent a “Breakaway”…. this does not apply to the goalkeeper within his own Penalty Box), fouling an opponent to prevent an obvious goal scoring opportunity (e.g., holding to stop a breakaway), or using offensive, insulting or threatening language and/or gestures.

RED CARD POLICY: A player or coach ejected (red-carded) in a game by a referee will be suspended according to the following guidelines:

1st Time Offense at Apex Sports Zone:   May not be present in the building for the next game.

2nd Time Offense at Apex Sports Zone:   May not be present in the building for the remainder of the session (or the next session if the offense occurs in the last 2 weeks of the session).

3rd Time Offense at Apex Sports Zone:  May not be present in the building for any future soccer games.

Any team that refuses to divulge the name of the ejected player will not be allowed to continue playing until the name is given to the referee or facility manager.

Penalty Kick

Penalty Kicks: shall be issued to the attacking team if any of the following is committed by the defense within its own penalty area: (a) any violation that would normally result in a direct free kick (b) any violation committed by the defense, or defense and offense simultaneously during the taking of a penalty kick. Penalty kicks shall be taken from the dash for all age groups. All players except the kick taker and goalkeeper must remain outside the white line until the kick is taken.

U6 specific rules

There will be no officials for U6 games. We ask a coach from each team to stand on the field and coach while serving as the referee for each game.

U6 games we will not record the scores.

Other rules for u6:

Players are not allowed to touch the ball inside the restricted arc near the goal. If a defending team touches the ball inside the arc to clear the ball, the play will result in a free shot from midfield. If an attacking team touches the ball inside the arc, this will result in a goal kick for the other team.

Any foul or penalty that occurs inside the arc will result in a free shot from midfield.

If the ball hits the ceiling net during the game, this will result in a free kick from midfield.

The Season:

Standings:  Standings will be posted on the website.  Teams will receive 3 points for a win and 1 point for a tie.   In divisions where a team plays an unequal amount of games, winning percentage will be used to determine standings.   Tiebreaker procedure to determine placing for final round games is:  1) Head to Head  2) Goal Differential (max 5 goal difference per game).   3) Goals against. 

Final Round Games: Apex’ goal for the final round of games during each session is for each team to end the season with the most competitive match up in their division. For that reason, we generate the schedule for our final round of games based on the standings from the previous games. The #1 seed will play the #2 seed, the #3 seed will play the #4 seed, and so on. For divisions with an odd number of teams, the lowest three teams in the standings will play a “round robin” of shortened games in the final week.

Scheduling:    Apex will make every effort possible to schedule at least 7 games for each team (6 games and then the “championship round during the last week), including make-up games due to weather.  However there is no guarantee of the 7 games if unforeseen circumstances arise.    The scheduling policy is that games may begin as early as 7:30am on weekends and may begin as late as 10:30pm on all nights.  No team will have to start a game at 7:30am or 10:30pm more than once and it’s rare that we would have to start a game that late, but it is a possibility.

Inclement Weather Policy: Every reasonable effort will be made to play games as originally scheduled. We will take many factors into consideration when determining if closures are necessary due to severe weather. While school or other business closures are one of those factors, those closures DO NOT necessarily indicate Apex’s status. (7am weather conditions are often far different from 4pm weather conditions).


Weather closure information will be posted on the main page of our website and we will try to email every player/parent registered for games that may be postponed because of weather.   Every effort will be made to communicate open/closed details on severe weather days 2 hours prior to the first kickoff.


Because weather and driving conditions change rapidly in Ohio, we may indicate a certain block of time “on as scheduled” or “closed” and have instructions for additional weather updates throughout the day.


Pre Game/Warm-Up:   Soccer balls are not permitted outside of the playing fields at Apex Sports Zone.  Teams may warm-up but must do so WITHOUT a ball anywhere outside of the playing field.   Teams will be able to enter the field when the previous game ends or 15 minutes prior to kick off if there is no game or event before the game.   Lights and doors will remain off and closed until 15 minutes prior to kick off.  Please let your team know not to show up before this time.   Please have your starters on the field and ready for kick off at the scheduled time.

Player Restrictions:   Apex Sports Zone reserves the right to deny registration to any player and reserves the right to remove a player from a roster at any time.

Protests: Protests regarding the incorrect application of the Laws of Indoor Soccer at Apex and/or player eligibility must be turned in to the Apex office within 24 hours of the match in question in writing. The Director of Soccer will rule on the protest before the protester’s next game.