AYSO Region 213
Under-6 Division

Practices and Season Format

Coaches can have up to two 1-hour practices per week. After the season begins, coaches are strongly encouraged to reduce the number of practices to no more than one 1-hour practice per week.

Scores are not recorded. And, there are no standings.

Game setup and Guidelines

The following guidelines include the only elements of the Laws of the Game that apply to the AYSO Short Sided Game Program for U-6:

The Field:

The recommended field size for U-6 games is 30 x 15 yards marked with lines or cones. The city of Irvine has agreed to allow us to mark the corners and a midpoint for both the goal line and touch lines for two pairs of U-6 fields on Harvard C. AYSO Region 213 will not be allowed to paint the entire U-6 field (goal lines, touch lines and goal area lines) on Harvard C. As a result, someone will need to setup the cones (to define the field) and PUGGs, take them down and return them to storage each week.

Each "Field" for U-6 games is actually a pair of U-6 fields near each other. Each team is split in half into two "sub-teams." See The Teams below for an explanation on how games are played using the sub-teams.

The Goals:

The goals in U-6 games will be PUGG goals (which will be smaller than the recommended size: a maximum of 4 feet high and 6 feet wide or 2 tall cones set 6 feet apart).

The Ball:

A size 3 ball is used for U-6 games.

The Teams:

Each U-6 team will have a maximum of 12 players on the roster.

Games are played with 4 or 5 players per team on the field (4v4 or 5v5) and no goalkeepers. As such, each team is split into two sub-teams of 5 to 6 players. Each sub-team starts the game on one of the paired fields and plays a sub-team from the other team. At the half, the Away or Visiting team's sub-teams switch fields. To illustrate, let's split Team 1 into Team 1A and Team 1B sub-teams and Team 2 into Team 2A and Team 2B. For the first half, Team 1A plays Team 2A and Team 1B plays Team 2 B. Assuming Team 2 is the Away team, their two sub-teams switch fields. Therefore, Team 1A plays Team 2B and Team 1B plays Team 2A in the second half.

Coaches can decide prior to the start of the Game to change the format to accommodate team size differences as needed as long as all players get a chance to play at least three of the four periods.


In U-6 games, the game is supervised or "officiated" by the coaches or an AYSO registered volunteer ("game supervisors"). Each Team is responsible for providing a game supervisor for one of the fields.

Game Duration and Substitutions:

All U-6 games are played with two 20-minute halves which are divided into two 10-minute periods ("quarters"). Substitutions are made at the end of each quarter, at halftime and for injuries.

A minimum of 2 quarters is required for each player and no one player can play 4 quarters until everyone has played 3 quarters.

The Start of Play:

To start the first and second halves, and following each goal, play is started or restarted with a kick-off in the center of the field. A coin toss is used to determine which team kicks off to start the game and the other team kicks off to start the second half. Following a goal, the team scored upon kicks off.

The Kick-off:

The kick-off is taken from the center of the field with each team in their own half and the team not kicking off at least 5 yards from the ball. Do not insist the opponent be a minimum of precisely 5 yards from the ball as this is just a guide to give the kicker room to kick the ball without it immediately hitting an opponent. Remember, let them play and do not interfere for technicalities.

Ball In and Out of Play:

The ball is out of play in all age group games when it completely crosses the touch line (side line) or goal line (end line) either on the group or in the air.

The game supervisors will determine when the ball is out of play and should guide the restart, interfering as little as possible. It is the player's game, let them play and work on technique later.

Method of Scoring:

A goal in all age group games is awarded when the ball completely crosses the goal line into the goal. Goals should be enthusiastically celebrated by everyone. Goals are not recorded and scores are not reported in U-6 games.

Fouls and Other Stoppages:

Deliberate fouling should be rare in U-6 games. Kicking, tripping, handling the ball and dangerous play may occur. There should be few, if any additional reasons to stop play in U-6 games. If a player is "not playing well with others", or if play must be stopped for any other reason (injury, substitution, confusion, or to watch a passing train, butterfly or frog), refocus the players and begin again with a free kick or as may be appropriate. Award the restart to whichever team deserves it. Stoppages must not become a lengthy ceremony.

Free Kick:

Play may have to be stopped occasionally to "sort things out" in U-6 games. When this is necessary, correct the situation then restart with a free kick for a deserving team. The opposing team should be at least 5 yards from the ball in U-6 games. All free kicks in U-6 games are direct free kicks which means, if you're lucky, a goal can be scored directly from the kick without the ball having to be touched or played by another player on the field (indirect kick).

Throw in:

When the ball goes out of play in U-6 games across the touch line (side lines) or the goal lines (end lines) without a goal being scored, a throw-in is awarded on the touch line nearest the point where it crossed the line. If the ball goes out of play across the goal line without a goal being scored, then the throw-in is taken anywhere (within reasonable distance from the corner) up the touch line (and not taken from the goal line). The throw-in is awarded to the team that didn't touch the ball last.

In U-6 games, whether the throw-in is properly taken or not, let it go...teach proper technique later. Again, let them play with minimum interruption. Keep the game moving and fun.