Lesson 3: Lines of a Soccer Field
An 11v11 soccer field and it’s lines looks like the example above. It is worth noting, however, that at different ages the size of the field (as well as the corresponding dimension on the field) will be smaller. 11v11 is the maximum size a soccer game can legally be.
This area is also referred to as the ‘6yd box’ because the top is 6 yards from the endline. In this rectangle is where goal kicks are taken (the ball can be placed anywhere in this box, or on this line), and the top of the goal area is the minimum distance the ball can be from the goal during an in-direct freekick.
Anywhere in this area the defending goalkeeper can use their hands or arms to touch the ball. Outside this area, if the goalkeeper uses their hands or arms to touch the ball, it would be a handball. Also, if the attacking team gets a foul in the Penalty Area, it results in a penalty. Also referred to as the ‘18yd box.’
If a penalty is awarded in the penalty area, a freekick is given on this spot.
If a penalty is given, all players (except from the shooter and the defending goalkeeper) must be outside the Penalty Area as well as outside the Penalty Arc. Reason being is because the Penalty Arc is 10yds from the Penalty Spot, which is the minimum distance all defending players need to be during any freekick.
The Center Circle is 10yds from the Center Spot on the field. All opposing players need to be outside this circle, as well as on their own half, whenever a kickoff happens. Outside of kickoffs, the Center Circle serves no other purpose.
The line divides the field into two equal halves. It is important because all players need to be on their own half during a kickoff, and during play a player cannot be offside if they are on their own half of the field when the ball is played.
These lines are on either side of the long side of the field. If the ball goes out-of-bounds over a sideline, the restart is a throw-in.
The endlines are two lines that travel the two short ends of the field. If the ball goes out-of-bounds over one of these lines, the restart is either a corner or a goalkick, depending on who touched the ball last.
A corner mark is found at the 90 degree intersections between the sidelines and endlines. If the ball goes out for a ‘corner’ the restart is at one of these intersections closest to where the ball went out.