Futsal is a good tool to help build players skills while under pressure. Since it’s only 5v5 you get lots of chances on the ball and how to defend and get open off the ball. Futsal has been around a long time in South America and Europe, while in the US it became popular around 2010. The ball is smaller and doesn’t bounce as much as a regular soccer ball, making it easier to control the first touch. You play on a hard surface [basketball/volleyball court or concrete] indoor or outdoor. If you’re playing on grass or turf – it’s not futsal.
The futsal ball
The ball is smaller than a regular soccer/football…
Example: Ages 12 – adults use a size 5 soccer ball, where the largest futsal ball is the size of a regular size 4 soccer ball. Ages 7-11 uses what looks like a size 3.
The purpose and benefit for a smaller ball is that it’s easier to control with the bottom/sole of your foot.
A futsal ball is unique in that it doesn’t bounce high…
Technically [FIFA rules] the ball must not bounce lower than 50cm or higher than 65cm on the
first rebound when dropped from a height of 2m.
See the bounce difference of a futsal vs regular soccer ball on concrete…
Court size and type of floor
Typically a futsal court is the size of a basketball court…
Dimensions: 138′ x 42′ largest or 125′ x 66′ smallest. Although, if you’re just playing for fun it doesn’t matter if it’s smaller or bigger.
“Futsal in the US is usually played on volleyball or basketball courts.”
- Indoor surface
The surface for indoors is going to either be the wood floor like basketball or the hard plastic/rubber type pieces that you see in some volleyball gyms.
Compared to outdoor concrete surfaces the indoor is going to be faster because the type of court is smoother.
“I think kids should be playing pick up or futsal all the time.”
- Outdoor surface
A concrete type surface is what you’ll usually see outside…
There is your smoother finish which is better in my opinion compared to the rough concrete finish…
Example: There’s a tennis court at one of my locations that was just redone… The new texture is rough which helps you have more grip, helping you not slip when wet.
Some concrete is hard on the balls where in just one session you will see the wear on the skin of the ball.
How rough or smooth the outdoor floor surface is usually depends on the finish and how old it is.
How futsal helps player development
Brazilians especially are familiar with futsal and play a lot of pick up games outside. Since it often rains in many parts of Brazil, the courts are covered but the sides are open for air. So it’s outside, but there is a cover over top.
Movement off the ball is key to create space for both dribbling and passing opportunities.
Everything happens fast. You have to think ahead and react because there are lots of counter attacks and chances to score.
Number of players
5v5 including the goalkeeper…
The fact that there are only 4 field players + the goal keeper makes for lots of learning – both on offense and defense.
These small numbers make for lots of touches and 1v1 / 2v2 situations.
- No punts – The ball must stay below head height. Otherwise, the ref will award the opposing team a free kick. Most keepers throw the ball…
- No offside – There are no offsides in futsal
- Unlimited substitutions – No limit to the number of substitutions made during a game. They can be brought on at any time.
- No goals from free kicks – You can’t score from a direct free kick in Futsal like you can in outdoor soccer.
- No slide tackles – Players are not allowed to slide tackle but are allowed to slide on the field to stop the ball from going out of play or to stop the ball from going into their goal. The tackler’s opponent must be in control of the ball for sliding to be deemed a foul.
- Players who are sent off can be replaced – When a player gets sent off, there is a mandatory two-minute penalty following their replacement. However, if the player’s team scores a goal after they have been sent off, the replacement can go on the field before the two minutes are up.
- Goalkeepers rules when they have the ball – Goalkeepers can hold the ball with their hands in the penalty area, but they have to play it to a teammate within four seconds. This goes for whether the goalkeeper has the ball in their hands or at their feet.
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