Basic Rules for Playing Indoor Football

Football players playing on the football turf, Chennai, on a rainy day.

This is a summary of the Futsal Rules. League rules differ for state, regional, and national competitions. Let us learn about indoor football rules while using a football turf in Chennai in the blog here.

General Guidelines of Playing Futsal

The general guidelines for playing indoor football are:

  • Each team is allowed one one-minute timeout in each half while possessing the ball.
  • There is no extra time for injury or stoppage.
  • Teams consist of four outfielders and one goalie.
  • The goalkeeper must use a different jersey colour than the outfielders.
  • Futsal does not have offsides.

Indoor Football Rules and Regulations: Substitutions, Kick-Ins, and Set Pieces

All substitutions are made on the fly, including goalkeeper substitutes. A substitute may not access the pitch till the player leaving it has passed through the substitution area in front of his team's bench. Any substitute who enters the field of play before the player getting replaced has completely exited may be given a yellow card. All substitutes must be made to sit through the replacement area beside his team's bench rather than at the midfield line. At the start of halftime, teams will swap benches, guaranteeing that all replacements occur in the opposition half.

A closeup shot of a small boy and a trainer playing turf football in Chennai.

From the kick-off, a goal can be scored immediately against the opponents. Knocked balls are not allowed to be used. While considering kick-ins the ball should be positioned on the line within 4 seconds, and the shot must always be performed within this time. A goal pass for the opposite team is a kick-in which goes right into the opposing goal. A corner kick is a kick-in that leads straight into the defensive goal of the opposing side. If the kick-in somehow doesn't hit the pitch or is not retrieved within 4 seconds, the opposing team takes the kick-in.

Goal clearances happen whenever the ball completely passes the goalpost and does not travel under the crossbar or between the goalposts. The defensive team's goalkeeper throws or releases the ball from any position within the penalty area. The ball should be thrown within 4 seconds and the opponents must remain beyond the penalty area until the ball is in play.

Also Read: List of Equipment Used in Futsal

Corner kicks are straightforward. The ball should be placed right on the corner arc, and the kick should be performed within four seconds. The restart will become a goal-clearing for the opposition team if the kick isn't taken within 4 seconds. Free kicks can be either indirect or direct. Before the kick could be taken, the ball must remain still. Penalty kicks must be executed by a clearly designated kicker from the penalty mark. Defenders must be no closer to the ball than sixteen feet away and from behind the ball during the kick.

Indirect fouls and misconduct free kicks are awarded when a player plays dangerously, impedes an opposing player, or prevents the goalie from releasing the ball. If the goalkeeper takes more than four seconds to throw the ball when in custody, passes the ball again in his own half after striking it and the ball does not touch an opposing player, he is out of play.

The misbehaving player is issued a yellow card. If a player receives 2 yellow cards in a row, he is given a red card. Such players are suspended for at least one game. The violating team plays with one fewer player for 2 full games or until the two-minute penalty ends, whichever comes first.

Indoor Football Free Kick Rules: Fouls, Penalty Spots, and Cumulative Foul System

A view of indoor futsal turf in Chennai.

The scoresheet and scoreboard record all free-kick fouls. If 1 team commits six or more free-kick fouls in half, the other team will be awarded a free-kick without a wall. In case, the foul happens beyond the second penalty area, the free kick with no wall is got from the second penalty spot. When a foul occurs closer to the target than the second penalty region (but still outside the penalty area), the opposition team can decide whether to conduct the free kick with no wall from the foul position. A clearly established kicker must strike all free kicks with no fence to score a goal.

When the kick is taken, the opposing team may not form a wall or be closer to the ball over sixteen feet. The goalie has to be outside the goal line but no closer to the ball than 16 feet. Fouls are reset to 0 at the start of the second half and continue into extra time if it is played. The penalty spot is located 20 feet from the goal line and in the center of the goal, at the apex of the penalty line. The second penalty area is 30 feet from the goal line and in the center of the goal. If advantage is used, free-kick fouls will count as cumulative fouls even if the game is not stopped. When the referee makes a two-arm gesture, and the foul is a clean, free-kick foul, it will be counted as such. If the motion is made with only one hand, the free kick is considered indirect and does not get counted as a cumulative foul.


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