U12-U16 MWFA matches operate under modified Laws of the Game: MWFRA Modified Laws 2024

Duration of Match/Ball Sizes:


U12 MWFA Playing Rules

Under 12 competitions in 2024 will play according to modified Laws of the Game. All FIFA Laws of the Game should be applied except for the scenarios listed below:

Number of Players: 9 players on a team, one of which must be a goalkeeper. Maximum of 5 substitutes. Games must not commence or continue with fewer than 7 players.

Field Size: Length 60 (min) to 70 (max); Width: 40 (min) – 50 (max). The technical areas must be on the same side of the field.

Penalty Area: Depth: 10m – Width: 20m

Kick-Off: Opponents must be standing within their own half and must be at least 5m away from the ball until it is in play. A goal can be scored into the opposition goal directly from a kick off.

Goalkeeper: The goalkeeper is allowed to handle the ball anywhere inside their own penalty area. To restart play after a save or gathering the ball with their hands, the ball may be thrown, rolled or kicked from the hands within 6 seconds.

Sanctions: Yellow and Red cards are applicable in U12.

Temporary Dismissals (Sin-Bin): Any player who is guilty of dissent should be sent to the sin-bin. The sin-bin period for U12 is 5 minutes.

Offside: Law 11 (Offside) applies in all U12 matches.

Free Kicks: Law 13 (Free Kicks) applies in all U12 matches with the following modifications:

Penalty Kicks: Law 14 (The Penalty Kick) applies in all U12 matches with the following modifications:

Throw-ins: Law 15 (The Throw–in) applies in U12 matches.

Goal Kicks: Law 16 (The Goal Kick) applies in all U12 matches with the following modifications:

Corner Kicks: Law 17 (The Corner Kick) applies in all U12 matches with the following modifications:

A .pdf of these modified U12 Laws can be downloaded HERE: MWFRA Modified Laws 2024


25 Metre Rule (Under 13s – Under 14s):

The purpose of the 25m Rule is to facilitate younger age groups playing out from the back with reduced pressure when they are awarded a goal kick or free kick in their penalty area.

The Clearance Zone is a rectangular area bounded by the touchlines, the goal line and an imaginary line parallel to and 25m from the goal line. This line must be indicated by cones, poles or other marking to assist the referee. Referees are expected to undertake a field check which should include ensuring that the Clearance Zone has been marked out. If there are no cones/poles set up to indicate the Clearance Zone, the referee is required to ask the home team for them to set up the Clearance Zone.

The 25m Rule applies to the U13 through U14 age groups and is in operation for goal kicks and also for free kicks awarded to the defending team in the penalty area.

For clarity:

The following diagram illustrates the 25m rule process: