Footy Timer is all you need to run a friendly little-net Football (aka Soccer).
For the past 8 years, my friends and I have been renting a gym to hold a small game of indoor soccer. Over the years we’ve come up with rules to make our game safe & fun. I wrote this app so that we could have a timer that did a bit more than just keep time. There is nothing, though, that would keep you from using this app as a plain timer.
Nothing below is set in stone, these are just the rules that my friends and I have adopted over the years that we’ve been playing indoor soccer. Modify anything and everything as it suits your needs and/or environment.
You can play in a school gym with a hardwood basketball court or a small outdoor area. You can pretty much play this anywhere. Since the teams are only 4 or 5 players each, you don’t want too large of a playing field. The size of a basketball court is enough. Alternatively you can play outside on turf or grass. You can even play this in a Handball court (You’ll have to relax the goalie restrictions a bit, though).
You need two small goals (around 40″x66″ or 150x110cm works well), one at each end of the court. If you have good confident goalkeepers you can use larger nets too.
The goals aren’t that big, so you don’t want to use a large ball. The optimal ball would be a size 4 indoor soccer ball. The indoor designation is rather important because it determines how bouncy the ball is. You don’t want to use a bouncy ball on a hard court because you’ll end up chasing the ball down the road too often or you’ll have shots that are always too high.
The rules below are not official anywhere and are mostly guidelines to prevent/limit injury and to maximize the fun.
- 4 or 5 players per team. The optimal number of teams is 3 to 4.
- A player from (one of) the non-playing teams will act as a referee.
- To prevent bickering and useless arguments, the referee has the final word. Don’t waste time arguing. Just have fun.
- No player is allowed to touch the ball with their hands.
- The goalie is also NOT allowed to touch the ball with hands (the nets are too small for hands).
- If the nets are too large or you’re finding it too easy to score, allow the goalies to only deflect the ball with their hands (no grabbing or holding on to the ball).
- Each game is 5-6 minutes and the first team to score wins (sudden death). If you’re finding it too easy to score, get better goalies or remove the sudden death restriction.
- The winner plays the next team, losers wait for the chance to prove themselves again.
- No sliding tackles. You can seriously hurt yourself or a friend on a small court and in such a fast paced game.
- If a player is down (e.g. tripped & fell) he/she is not allowed to make contact with the ball. Get up on your feet first before you make contact with the ball. This ensures that a downed player won’t accidentally trip or otherwise injure another.
- Players are not allowed to have more than 2 points of contact with the ground (e.g. your two feet are fine, but if your knee also touches the ground you are considered a downed player and must get up before making contact with the ball or other players)
- Any player who commits a dangerous or intentional foul gets a 2 minute ejection (the referee decides who has crossed the line)
- Any player who touches the ball with hands (including the goalie) gets a 2 minute ejection (unless the referee deems it to be unavoidable or not intentional)
It is possible that no team is able to score a goal during the allotted time. In such a case, use the following tie breakers to determine the winner.
Tiebreaker for 3 teams
The winner of the last game wins, unless they tied the last game (i.e. won the tie breaker). In other words, you can not win back to back games through a tie breaker. If a team won the last game in the tiebreaker and they have tied again, they lost this game.
Tiebreaker for 4 or more teams
Both teams lose! If the next game doesn’t end in a tie, the most recent winner (among the waiting teams) plays the winner of the last match.
Now get out there and have some fun 🙂
Early Access/Beta Builds
This is a one man show and I only have so much time that I can dedicate to my personal projects. I would use all the help I can get specially when it comes to testing. The worst person to test any code is the author of that code because developers have coder’s bias. It means we miss/ignore things that others see. If you’d like to help test Footy Timer (and get the fixes before everyone else), you can join the Footy Timer testers in 3 easy steps:
- Join the Footy Timer community on Google+ to get access
- Let the Google Play Store know that you want to become a Footy Timer tester
- Download Footy Timer on Google Play Store
Every time a new build is to be released, you’ll get an update notification just as you would with any other app. Give it a try and if you run into any issues, report them either on the forum or via the contact link within the Footy Timer.