PARALYMPICS / Paralympic Sports

Football 7-a-Side

Updated: 2008-08-29 16:03



Every Football match is played between two teams with seven players on each side, including the goalkeeper. Each team consists of 12 players with three substitutions allowed during each match. A match cannot continue with fewer than four athletes on the field.

A Football 7-a-Side match lasts 60 minutes and is played in two halves of 30 minutes each, with a 15-minute half time in between. A goal is scored when the whole of the ball passes over the goal line, between the goalposts and under the crossbar. In group play-off matches or finals, if the match ends in a tie after the completion of the two 30-minute halves, two 10-minute extensions of extra time follow, where the FIFA 'Golden Goal' rule applies. If there is no winner after the extra time, the teams follow a penalty kick procedure where five players from each team take a penalty shot each, and if still equal, follow the FIFA procedure.

A referee and two assistant referees (linesmen) monitor the match. There are three rules for Football 7-a-side at the Paralympic Games, which differ from the Olympic rules. Firstly there is no off-side rule. Secondly, throw-ins may be made with one hand (while in Football at the Olympics it must be done with both hands). In this case, the player can roll the ball in such a way that it touches the ground immediately after it is released from the player's hand. Finally the goalkeeper may kick or throw the ball back into play after taking a maximum of four steps. The ball must be outside the goal area before it can be returned to the goalkeeper.

(Credit: IPC. Click here for further information.)

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