Small Sided Soccer

The Alameda Soccer Club’s Under 6 (U6), Under 7 (U7), and Under 8 (U8) age group divisions use formats generally referred to as “Small-Sided Soccer”. The U6 division plays in a “3v3” format; the U7 and U8 divisions in a “5v5” format. These formats involve fewer players on the field, resulting in more touches on the ball, better skills development, and more fun.

All Small-Sided formats use Game Monitors as on-the-field facilitators/referees. Game Monitors are typically the parents or soccer-experienced older siblings of the kids playing rather than the licensed referees used for older age groups. This helps achieve our goal of de-emphasizing competition and promoting fun.

Game Monitors play an important role in making Small-Sided Soccer work. The most important job of Game Monitors is to keep the game moving quickly. The vast majority of a Game Monitor’s actions are re-starting the game after the ball has gone out of play or after a goal.

This Guide presents the rules and guidelines used in both the 3v3 (U6) and 5v5 (U7 and U8) formats. Issues requiring clarification or amendment to these rules should be referred to the Alameda Soccer Club’s U6, U7 or U8 Coordinators.


Download PDF versions of the complete small sided manuals:

Key Differences Between U8 and U9/U10 Soccer

Game Monitor Guide (U6-U8)

3v3 Coaches Guide (U6)

5v5 Coaches Guide (U7-U8)