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Most of the prolific players today in the world started playing soccer from the street level. Compared to professional soccer, street soccer majorly serves as a platform for local players to showcase their dribbling skills and other soccer tricks.
From its name, street soccer entails playing soccer on the street; it incorporates a freestyle of play while keeping in mind the fair play of the game.
Street soccer today has been revolutionized. Even though some people see it as an informal game, it requires players to be agile and creative enough. In this article, we will have an in-depth discussion about street soccer. So read on to find out more.
What Is Street Soccer?
While most local players get their recognition out of playing in the streets, professional soccer clubs have scouts who look for younger talents to put into their youth system. If you love the extensive footwork in soccer then you should consider watching some of these street soccer games.
Some people view street soccer as a platform where you can learn the key components of soccer before advancing into modern professional soccer. Such components include the physical aspects, tactical approaches, technical abilities, and psychological aspects of the game.
Street soccer helps players make quick decisions while acknowledging that they can make mistakes. But what’s important is how they can improve and rectify the mistakes. The physical aspect of street soccer helps players improve their fitness and stamina.
These days, street soccer involves some informal varieties of soccer associations. The game itself does not entirely use the regulations of professional soccer such as large playing surfaces (pitches), pitch markings, corner flags, or even match officials.
Street Soccer Rules
The simplicity of the game is what makes it popular all over the world. However, as the game progressed more rules have been introduced to make the sport safer and entertaining for everyone involved.
Leagues, tournaments, and min tournaments are being organized frequently which has prompted the introduction of regulations in this sport. Some of the rules of street soccer include:
- The duration of matches is 7 minutes each for two halves.
- There should be a minimum of 4 players on each side and at least one lady on the pitch at all times.
- The match starts when the referee throws the ball into the court. When a goal is scored, the team that has conceded gets the ball to start.
- A goalkeeper cannot score goals, must not leave the penalty area, and must not hold the ball longer than necessary.
- There is no pass back allowed to the goalkeeper. If this happens the other team is awarded a penalty.
- Outfield players cannot enter the penalty area.
- At least one player should remain in the opposition half of the play.
- A penalty can be awarded by the referee for time-wasting.
- Free kicks are given for foul play.
- If a ball goes out of play, the ball must be rolled in by hand at ground level at the position it went out of the field of play.
- In case of a foul, the referee can award a blue card (2 minutes time excursion) or a red card (sent off altogether).
- In a tournament, the winning team receives 3 points and the losing team 0 points. In a draw, sudden death penalties are taken and the winner receives 3 points while the loser gets 1 point.
- Each match has 1 referee.
- The field should be 22 (long) X 16 (wide) meters. The goal size is 4M wide, 1.3M in height, 1M in depth. The penalty area is a half circle with 4M radius.
Street Soccer Field Sizes
As mentioned earlier the soccer fields do not necessarily have to be like those of professional soccer. The US has a Street Soccer USA organization that has been actively involved in promoting and developing street football. In recent years, the non-profit organization has come up with soccer field rules, what most of you know as the “SSUSA Park Competition Rules for Leagues and Drop-in Mini Tournaments”
1. Field Surface
More than often the street soccer fields comprise artificial turf flooring. The fields should have walls to prevent the ball from leaving the field of play.
In most cases, nets are used and whenever the ball hits the nets and leaves the field of play, the play will be restated accordingly.
2. Field Markings
Street soccer fields should always be marked with 2 goal creases. A halfway line should also be included which divides the field of play into two halves.
With walls built to prevent the ball from getting out, no touchlines are needed. Besides, unlike professional soccer, there are no flag posts or corner arcs in the fields.
In professional soccer, you will find out that some soccer stadiums are either wider or larger than others. That’s why teams will always talk of home advantage when playing on their stadiums since they are used to its dimensions.
Street soccer, however, requires the fields to be standard. In most cases the size should be; 72 ft. (long) *52 ft. wide. The goals are also required to be; 4ft. (tall) *12 ft. (wide).
4. Goal Areas
Besides the trickery play and extensive showcasing of foot works, street players can increase their prowess by their ability to score goals. This brings out the competitive nature of the game.
The goal areas should always have a semicircle radius of about 10 ft. radius with the nets attached to the goal sticks.
5. Substitution zone
Even though we have mentioned earlier that no substitutions are required after the start of a game, it does not mean that street soccer fields should not have substitution zones.
These zones are mainly used to allow players to leave or enter the field of play since jumping over the wall is prohibited.
How Do You Play Street Soccer?
Most of you will be amused to find out how simple it is to play street soccer. Normally, the teams can have 4-10 players and can either be male or female.
Similar to professional soccer, the match starts when the ball is thrown into the field of play. If a team starts the play in the first period, the other team starts the match in the second period. The differences come in when a goal is scored. Instead of starting the ball at the center of the pitch, the goalkeeper starts the play immediately by rolling the ball into his teammate.
Some rules of play include;
- No-body contact- using your body to push and box out another player is prohibited. Ball contact only!
- Opposing players must tackle without touching the other player-In leagues or tournaments, a poor tackle on another player leads to simulation
To sum up, street soccer is quite a unique sport. If you want to get into a better physical shape, you should perhaps try it out. So let’s go play!