Soccer is probably the most popular sport across the world. This can be proven by the enormous crowds and following that the major leagues such as EPL and La Liga have around the world. What most people don’t is that soccer is also one of the oldest sports in the world. It can be traced back more than 2000 years ago in Rome, ancient China and Greece, among other countries. However, it is in England, where soccer transitioned into a competitive sport.
Over the years, soccer has transformed and developed into a lucrative industry. A lot has changed with the modern soccer as we know it with news rules set to improve the game. If you want to get a quick grasp of this sport, we’ve got you covered. In this guide, we have put together some of the best soccer basics you should know. They include:
The Soccer Field
The soccer field is probably the most sophisticated thing for most people who want to learn more about this sport. Most of us know about the white lines but very little about the main features of the fields. Don’t get shocked to learn that most of the ardent soccer fans don’t even know the dimensions of the playground. The recommended length of the soccer pitch is between 100 yards and 130 yards while the width should be between 50 yards and 100 yards.
But for the professional top tier games, the recommended size of the field is between 110 and 120 yards lengthwise and 70 and 80 yards wide. The size of the goal is standard (8 feet high by 8 yards wide), regardless of the size of the field. Both the 6-yard box and the 18-yard box immediately after the goal must also remain standard. The field is divided into two halves. The centre circle in the middle of the field is used to start the game.
There are several pieces of equipment players and coaches need to play soccer safely. Most of the soccer items help to improve the safety of the players and make the game fun. First is the uniform. Every team must have a different colour for the shirt and jersey to identify them from the opponents. Similarly, the ref must also wear a short and jersey that is entirely different either of the team’s colours for easy identification. The other thing that players and coach must have are soccer cleats.
Other essential soccer equipment includes training scrimmage and quality soccer balls. It is also essential to have training cones, target nets, agility ladder and poles for practice. The goalkeeper should always have padded gloves to protect their hands from injuries. These are all some of the essential equipment that makes soccer fan and safe.
There is a lot that goes into the making of a soccer team. For the number of players on the soccer pitch, each side must have 11 players. This includes the goalkeeper, defenders, midfielders and forwards. The goalkeeper work is to use the body to keep the ball from crossing the line.
For the defenders, they are the last line of defence, and their job is to ensure that the opponents do not pass the ball past then to score. Depending on the formation of the team, the number of defenders could go up to four. They are always near the goalkeeper to keep the balls away.
Midfielders are the players that control the game from the middle of the field. They take both the attacking and defensive responsibilities. So, they are the players that push the ball towards the opposing side and feed it to the forwards.
The number of the forward players could vary from 3 to 1 depending on the formation the team is using. This is the group of players responsible for scoring goals. So, their job is to target and put the ball in the net. However, scoring is only allowed if the ball is kicked by all part of the body apart from hands.
Over the years, soccer rules have changed to accommodate both the growth of the sport and technology advancement. Here are 5 of the most basic but important soccer rules:
- A soccer match has 90 minutes, which are split into halves of 45 minutes. The two halves are separate by a 15 minutes break.
- Apart from the 11 players, the team is allowed to have at least 7 members to constitute a complete team. So, a team can have red cards for four players and will still continue playing. In case of injuries and other factors, the team can substitute three times in a game. Any player that is substituted is not allowed to play for the rest of the match. In addition to that, the number of substitute players must not exceed seven.
- The standard soccer ball for the professional competition must have a circumference of 58-61 cm. It must also be of circular shape.
- For the control of the match, each game must have a referee and two assistants, each along the two longer sides of the field. The referee can punish players by sending them off the pitch if they commit fouls that are against the sportsmanship code.
- Only the goalkeeper should touch the ball with hands but not beyond his penalty areas. In addition to that, the goalkeeper cannot hold the ball for more than 6 seconds.
Winning the Game
To win a soccer game, you need to score more goals than your opponents. In all soccer leagues across the world, a win by majority goals is awarded three points. However, a team earns one point if they level the score with the opponents.
These are some of the soccer basics that every soccer enthusiasts should. They are tips that make the game of soccer. However, there is a lot more about soccer that you need to learn for a better understanding of the game.