Futsal Rules

Any intramural policies not mentioned here may be found in the intramural handbook.  Unless specifically mentioned below, intramural futsal play is governed by FIFA futsal rules. By participating in intramural sports, the participant agrees to abide by all intramural rules and policies.

You may suffer physical and/or mental injury from participating in Intramural Sports. There are certain risks of injury that are inherent to participation in sports and recreational activities. These types of injuries may be minor or serious and may result from the actions or inactions of themselves or others. By choosing to participate in Intramural Sports, you do so at your own risk. It is understood that most activities require a certain level of fitness and health, and that each person has a different capacity for participating in these activities. Participants of Intramural Sports are highly encouraged to have a physical examination and procure health insurance prior to play. UC Campus Recreation does not provide health insurance.

Intramural Supervisors undergo concussion recognition training. In the instance a participant is exhibiting any signs or symptoms of a concussion as a result of a head injury sustained during intramural play, he or she will be removed from the activity. This individual must provide a physician’s note clearing the individual to play by a specific date. This note may be e-mailed to intramural@uc.edu or faxed to 513-556-0601.

In order to qualify for playoffs, teams must obtain a 3.0 or higher sportsmanship average during the regular season.

Sportmanship Rating
Score Player & Team Behavior   Penalty
4.0 Always respectful to officials and opposing team.
No complaining or arguing.
No unsportsmanlike penalties.
3.0 Usually respectful to officials and opposing team.
Minimal arguing or complaining about officials.
Maximum one (1) unsportsmanlike penalty.
2.0 Moderately disrespectful to officials and/or opposing team.
Moderate arguing or complaints about officials.
Multiple unsportsmanlike penalties OR Maximum one (1) ejected player
1.0 Frequently disrespectful to officials and/or opposing team.
Frequent arguing or complaints about officials.
Any contact or provocation of officials.
Multiple ejected players or one (1) player involved in a fight.
0.0 Player(s) out of control.
Excessively disrespectful to officials and/or opposing team.
Excessive arguing or complaints about officials.*
Multiple players involved in a fight. Destruction or abuse of property.

* A team that receives a "0" rating will be suspended from competition until its captain meets with the Assistant Director or Coordinator of Intramural Sports. The team may be removed from competition.


To be eligible for intramural sports, each player must possess an active membership to the University of Cincinnati Campus Recreation Center AND be a current University of Cincinnati student (enrolled in at least one (1) credit hour), faculty, or staff member.


Participants may participate on one (1) coed and one (1) non-coed team per sport, per season. Substituting for another team in the same league is prohibited.

3.3 Club Sport Players


Competitive club sport players and former varsity athletes may not participate on an intramural (recreational) league team in the same or a similar sport as their club/varsity sport.


For sports with five (5) or more players on the playing field at one time, a team is limited to two (2) competitive club sport participants (in the same or similar sport) on its’ roster.


For sports with four (4) or less players on the playing field at one time, a team is limited to one (1) competitive club sport participant (in the same or similar sport) on its’ roster.

3.4 Varsity Athletes In the Same Or Similar Intramural Sport


Current varsity athletes are not allowed to play on an intramural team of the same or a similar sport as their varsity sport.


Former varsity athletes must sit out 365 days from last appearing on a varsity roster to be eligible to play in the same or similar sport as their varsity sport. Teams are allowed one (1) former varsity athlete (in the same or similar sport) per roster.


Jewelry is prohibited across all intramural sports. This includes, but is not limited to, piercings, necklaces, rings, wrist fitness trackers, watches, and bracelets.


Medical jewelry is allowed but must be taped down.


Billed hats are prohibited in all sports except softball.


Athletic clothing and footwear is required. Prohibited items include, but is not limited to: jeans, cargo pants/shorts, skirts, loafers, open-toed shoes, and boots. Indoor sports require non-marking footwear. For outdoor field sports, detachable or metal cleats are prohibited.


Any casts, braces, or other protective equipment must be padded and secure.


A team may have up to six (6) players on the court at once including one goalkeeper. Teams may begin play with a minimum of four (4) players.


Additional players may be added until the start of the second half.


Should a team of more than six (6) players on the court at any time, the captain will be assessed a yellow card.


If injuries or ejections cause a team to drop to three (3) players, the team may continue, as long as they started with the minimum number of players.


No team shall participate with less than three (3) players at any time.


A futsal team may have up to 20 players on its’ roster.


Players may substitute freely during play stoppage. The official only needs to be notified when a goalkeeper is substituting.


During play, all players except the goalkeeper may substitute on the fly so long as the player exits prior to the sub entering the court.


Players must sub in the designated area (marked by cones).


A game consists of two (2) 18-minute halves and a two-minute halftime.


In the case of inclement weather or other circumstances, a game is considered “official” after the first half is completed.


A running clock will be used for the entire game except for injuries (at official’s discretion), an official’s timeout, or a team timeout.


Each team is allowed one (1) 60-second timeout per half. The team calling the timeout must be in possession of the ball. During a stoppage in play, either team may call a timeout.


Timeouts do not carry over to following periods.


There are no timeouts in extra time.


Coin Toss


The captain winning the initial coin toss will have the choice to start on offense/defense, defend a goal, or defer.


The next choice will belong to the loser of the toss, and choices will alternate thereafter. Possession to start the second half depends on the decisions made in the initial coin toss.


If regulation ends in a tie during the regular season, there will be no overtime.


If regulation ends in a tie during playoffs, the following will occur:


A three (3) minute golden goal overtime period.


If neither team has scored during the first overtime period, play will move into penalty kicks.

Each team must select four (4) players from the players who are on the court at the end of the previous period to kick. If tied after four (4) players from each team have shot, the fifth player will kick. If tied after all five (5) players have kicked, the sixth kick will be the first penalty shooter. Penalty shots will continue until the tie is broken.


All penalty kicks during overtime will be shot into the same goal.


The end lines extended of both basketball courts shall be used as the touch (side) lines. The north sideline of court six and south sideline of court five will be the goal lines.


Surrounding each goal will be a penalty area (arc) marked by blue tape.


A goal is considered a goal when the entirety of the ball crosses the goal line between the goal posts, provided it has not been thrown, carried, or intentionally propelled by the hand or arm of a player on the attacking team, except in the case of the goalkeeper provided he or she is within his or her own penalty area.


A player may score via:

  • Goal kick
  • Direct kick
  • Kickoff
  • Penalty kick
  • Corner kick
  • Drop ball
  • Goalkeeper punt, throw, or kick.


Each goal is worth one (1) point.


Mercy Rule: A match shall be considered final when:


Either team is up by 15 goals or more at any point during the second half.


Either team is up by 8 goals or more within two (2) minutes left in the second half.


Starting the game:


The official shall hold a pre-match coin toss. The winner will determine which side they wish to defend or if they would like to kickoff at the start of the game.


Each player shall be in his or her own half of the court. Every member of the opposing team must be at least five yards away from the ball until the ball is kicked. The ball shall not be deemed in play until it has traveled half the distance of its’ own circumference.


A ball must travel forward for a legal kickoff.


The kicker shall not play the ball a second time until it has been touched or played by another player.


A goal CAN be scored directly from a kickoff.


After a goal, the game shall be restarted by a kickoff by the other team.


Following temporary suspensions of play, the official shall drop the ball at the spot where play was suspended, or it shall be restarted with an indirect free kick by the team in possession of the ball prior to the suspension.


Teams are responsible for retrieving the ball when it goes out of play. Officials have the authority to issue yellow cards if frequent or blatant delays of game occur.


The ball is considered out of bounds when the entire ball crosses the goal or touch line either on the ground or in the air.


A ball crossing a perimeter line will result in a kick-in. Players have four (4) seconds to put the ball in play on a kick-in. Defending players must give the kicking player three (3) yards.


A ball that completely crosses the touch (side) line will result in a kick-in (indirect). The ball is placed on the line and kicked in by the opposing team of the team who last touched the ball.


A ball that completely crosses the goal line, last touched by the defense will result in a corner kick (direct).


A ball that completely crosses the goal line, last touched by the offense will result in a goal kick (direct).


The ball is in play at all other times, from the start of the game to the finish, including:


Rebounds off an official when the official is in the field of play.


In the event of an infringement of the rules.


If a goal becomes displaced by a ball, play may be stopped and a goal kick may be awarded to the team whose goal was displaced.


There is no offsides in intramural futsal.


For all participants’ safety, sliding, slide tackling, and playing from the floor (dangerous play) are prohibited. Offenders will automatically receive a yellow or red card depending on severity and the official’s judgment.


Intentionally striking one of the gray, rigid panels above the padding on the side of the court is prohibited. Offenders will automatically receive a yellow or red card depending on severity and the official’s judgment.


A major foul committed by a defensive player in his or her own penalty area (arc) will result in a penalty kick at the penalty mark.


Major Fouls – Results in a direct free kick to be taken by the opposing team from the place where the offense occurred. These include:

  • Kicking
  • Striking
  • Tripping
  • Holding
  • Handling the ball
  • Jumping at an opponent
  • Pushing
  • Dissent
  • Intentionally striking a gray panel on the upper portion of the side wall (instant yellow or red card depending on severity)
  • Slide tackle (instant yellow or red card depending on severity)
  • Charging violently (red card)


Minor Fouls – Results in an indirect free kick to be taken by the opposing team from the place where the offense occurred. Following the kick, another player must contact the ball prior to a goal being scored. These include:

  • Impeding the progress of an opponent.
  • Dangerous play
  • Delay of game
  • Player prevents goalkeeper from releasing ball from hands or tries to kick a held ball.


Penalty Kicks

  • A penalty kick is awarded if any a major foul is committed by a player in his or her own penalty area.
  • All other players must be on the other half of the court, behind the midline.
  • Regardless of the result of the penalty kick, the defense will receive a goal kick following the penalty kick. There are no rebounds.


Advantage – This is a discretionary judgment of the official which allows them to permit play to continue rather than stopping play to administer a foul. This concept is based on the premise that the foul would take away a favorable opportunity from the offended team. The foul may be subsequently called if the advantage does not materialize. In addition, cards may be administered at the next stoppage in play.


A player that receives a yellow card must come off the court for two (2) minutes and may not be replaced. The scorekeeper or closest official will indicate when this player may re-enter the game.


Should the opposing team score a goal during this two (2) minutes, the player may re-enter play prior to the ensuing kickoff.


A player that receives a red card or a second yellow card is disqualified, and the team must play shorthanded for the remainder of the game.

14. 1

Violations of the following rules will result in an indirect free kick:


A goalkeeper may bounce the ball for up to six seconds before releasing the ball.


A goalkeeper must distribute the ball within six seconds after gaining control of it.


A goalkeeper may not set the ball down and then pick it up again using his or her hands.


The ball may not be passed into the goalkeeper’s hands from the neutral zone by a member of his or her own team. This includes a series of passes among teammates back into the goalkeeper’s hands.

14. 1

A goalkeeper may not bring either knee above the waist in an offensive manner to protect himself or herself, as it could bring harm to other players. Penalty depends on the severity and may result in an ejection.