Womens Outdoor Rules


Updated May 2024


Grand River Soccer Club is guided by Canada Soccer, Ontario Soccer, and the FIFA Laws of the Game. The Club follows the latest Laws of the Game as published by the International Football Association Board. The online version can be found here ➞ IFAB Laws of the Game

Grand River Soccer Club mandates the following for all players, coaches, match officials and spectators:

General Expectations

  • Abusive behaviour and communication styles are not acceptable.
  • The use of profanity is not acceptable.
  • Alcohol or other controlled substances are prohibited from all recreational grounds, including, but not limited to, the playing area, parking facilities, and surrounding parks/areas where fields are located.
  • Smoking or vaping of cigarettes, cigars, or e-cigarettes and other controlled substances in the playing and spectator area or parking area is prohibited.
  • Keep fields and parks clean of garbage.
  • Respect area residents and community members by parking in designated areas.
  • Respect all municipal by-laws.

Player Expectations

  • Play co-operatively with team-mates.
  • Treat opponents, game officials, coaches, and spectators with respect.
  • Arrive a minimum of 15 minutes before game time in uniform, ready to play.
  • Do not enter the field area or benches until 5 minutes prior to game time or the previous group has completely vacated the facilities. Pre-game preparation can take place in other accessible areas near the field.
  • Players should not change clothing/uniforms in a public area, including on the field, on the sidelines or in the parking lot.
  • When applicable, a captain or player must turn off the field lights, shut and lock gates before leaving the field if they are the last game of the evening.

Coach/Team Captain Expectations

  • Demonstrate fair play, respect for others and good sportsmanship through example during the season.
  • Speak respectfully to players, officials, and spectators.
  • Offer constructive criticism in an effort to improve their team but also the Club.
  • Follow the Clubs player registration procedure for all players.
  • Print game sheets prior to each game and provide to the match officials before kick-off.
  • Submitting an online game report within 24 hours following each game.
  • When applicable, a captain or player must turn off the field lights, shut and lock the gate before leaving the field if they are the last game of the evening.
  • Ensure that all players on your team are aware of and abide by the Club expectations as well as the league rules.
  • Ensure that all fees are paid to maintain good standing with the Club.

Match Official Expectations

  • Maintain a commitment to professionalism.
  • Contact the Assignor and obtain their confirmation of any changes to your schedule/availability.
  • Contact your crew before your match.
  • Follow-the Pre-Game Countdown.
  • Review Club specific rules and officiate the game in a fair, non-partisan and unbiased manner.
  • Adhere the latest rules in accordance with Canada Soccer, Ontario Soccer, Grand River Soccer Club and published by IFAB.
  • Be respectful when addressing players, coaches, and spectators.
  • Report game results within 24 hours of completion. Seek assistance for discipline and report writing when required.

Spectator Expectations

  • Treat players, referees, opponents, and other spectators with respect.
  • Spectators must be located on the opposite side of the field from the players and coaches and must not step onto the field at any time, even after the game. Only registered players and team officials are permitted in the team bench area.
  • Adhere to any local by-laws.
  • To avoid injury to themselves and players, spectators must maintain a distance of not less than three meters from the field during the game.
  • Caregivers must ensure young spectators in their care do not interrupt the game and remain well away from the field.
  • Spectators must not play with a ball any closer than 10 meters from the field.
  • Pets must be leashed at all times as required local by-laws, and are prohibited at a number of fields. If a match official deems a pet to be a nuisance, the pet must leave the playing area immediately.

Consumption of Alcohol or Substances

Grand River Soccer Club takes the behaviour of its membership very seriously and has taken steps to ensure that everyone enjoys a ‘positive soccer experience’. The consumption of alcohol/controlled substances by its members pre- or post-game on or around the playing area or the parking area is expressly prohibited.

Upon notification of members or spectators consuming alcohol or other controlled substances at a Club scheduled event by facility staff, the team(s) for which the members or spectators are associated shall be suspended from all Club activities immediately and the team captain/manager will be required to attend a Membership Review Meeting within 3 days of the notice. There are no exceptions to this rule and no appeal or refund shall be granted.

As the Permit Holders, the Club reserves the right to take action against individuals or groups that jeopardize the Clubs ability to retain, obtain, or renew any facility contracts.

 Club Specific Requirements

  • Each team must provide, place, and retrieve two corner flags or pylons for each game.
  • Each designated home team must inspect both goal nets to ensure they attached securely and free of holes. If any minor repairs are required they are the home team responsibility.
  • Each designated home team must provide 2 game balls which have been determined by the Match Official to be in acceptable condition.
  • In the event of two teams playing with similar uniform colours, the home team is responsible for providing an alternate set of colours to clearly distinguish themselves from the opposing team. Goalkeepers must wear a colour different from their own team, the opposing team, and the Match Officials.
  • Solid metallic shoe studs are not permitted to be worn, nor are baseball, American football or rugby cleats.
  • Jewelry, piercings, smart watches, fitness trackers, and other accessories are not permitted to be worn.
  • Shin guards are mandatory.
  • Braces and casts of any type must be completely covered with a protective sleeve.
  • The Match Official or Club representative may deny participation to players for “unsafe” equipment at their discretion.

Team Registration

All teams must register their intent to participate with the Club each season and in advance through the specified registration process. The Club will issue an electronic invoice to teams accepted for the season.

League Fees

The League Fee will be established prior to each season. Payment of all fees must be made as per the invoice due date.  Failure to submit payment in full by the due date may result in additional administration fees such as a late payment charge of $100. Failure to submit payment in full prior to the start of the season may result in your team membership being revoked. Additional penalties for failure to submit payment by the due date are subject to Board review. Electronic payments are preferred. An administration fee of $100 will be applied for each NSF cheque.

Player Registration

All players must be registered with the Club and Ontario Soccer before they are allowed to participate in any Club event or play in any games. Players must register with the Club by completing our online Ontario Soccer Player Registration Form and Waiver. Team managers must confirm their roster and any player additions or removals with the Club Administrator. With the exception of the first game, new players are required to complete their online registration at least 48 hours before they intend to play to ensure they are eligible to participate. Team managers must also confirm with the Club Administrator that any new players have been properly registered and added to the team roster. Any player not properly registered or any team that plays an ineligible player will face disciplinary action as per Ontario Soccer Standard Penalties for Misconduct. Teams found to have played an ineligible player will be charged an administration fee of $100.00 in addition to any discipline fees or fines.

Teams may register up to 25 players on their roster. Additional player registration fees will be charged at the current rate for player registrations received in addition to those included with the team’s original invoice. These fees are payable before the player is eligible to play.

Players Playing With Multiple Teams

A player is allowed to play with multiple teams within the rules of Ontario Soccer and with Club approval. A player may not play on more than one team in the same division or group if the division has multiple levels of play. Players must be properly recorded on the game sheet for each team they play with.  A player who plays on more than one team will only pay one Ontario Soccer Player Registration Fee but must complete an online registration form for each team.

Women’s Competitive Player Limitation

Each women’s team may register a maximum of three competitive players that are registered to play with a competitive team, to their team. Any additional competitive players attempting to register or play will be considered ineligible. Any player not properly registered or any team that plays an ineligible player will face disciplinary action as per Ontario Soccer Standard Penalties for Misconduct. Competitive teams include, but are not limited to, those playing in SWDSL, WRSL, and OWSL. Please note that players registered to teams in any Provincial Development League such as OPDL, League 1, League 2, and League 1 Reserves are completely ineligible for registration.

Player Transfer

A player registered within the Club may request in writing to the Club Administrator to be transferred from one team to another. To complete the transfer, the player must be in good standing with their current team (no outstanding fees or obligations) and the new team must accept the move. Once approved, the player is ineligible to play with their new team for the next 3 regularly scheduled games. The player must also participate in 3 regular season games with their new team in order to be eligible to play in any playoff or cup games with their new team.

Players Equipment

The player’s equipment shall consist of a regular uniform including shirt, shorts, and high socks. Shirts must have a unique number that corresponds to the number of each player on the game sheet. It is mandatory for all players on the team to have a similar shirt color with different numbers. The goalkeeper must wear a numbered shirt with colours that distinguish them from the other players on both teams and the Match Official. The number shall be of contrasting colour to the shirt. If two teams have a similar colour shirt, then the home team must change.

All jewelry, piercings, smart watches, fitness trackers, and other accessories must be removed, not just covered.  No exceptions! The Match Official’s decision is final.

Shin guards and socks that fully cover the shin guards are mandatory at all times.

Game Sheets

Each team must print a copy of their approved game sheet for every game unless otherwise stated. Game sheets must be completed fully, including date, time, location, home team, away team, and every player participating. Every player must be represented on the game sheet including first name, last name, and shirt number.  Team officials must be listed on the game sheet to gain access to the team bench area. If a player is not participating their name should be crossed out on the game sheet. Only players and team officials listed on the game sheet are permitted in the team bench area. Completed games sheets must be provided to the game officials prior to the start of the game. Changes/updates to the game sheet must be completed prior to the start of the second half.

Game Officials

A Match Official and two assistants will be appointed to each 11v11 game. They shall enforce the laws of the game to the best of their ability and to their discretion. The decision of the game officials shall be final. The Club will not tolerate any abuse directed towards game officials at any time. The Match Official must complete the game sheet at the end of each game and report to the Club in writing the final score and any discipline that occurred during the game. Game Officials are paid directly by the Club within 15 days of the month end for games completed in the previous month.

The Game

Games must start and finish on time. Teams should be ready to play 10 minutes prior to the scheduled kick off time. A minimum of seven (7) players are required to start a game. If a team cannot provide the minimum number of players within 10 minutes of the scheduled kick off time, they will forfeit the game by a score of 3-0 and may be charged a $100.00 administration fee.

The game will consist of two 45 minute halves.  Games starting late may have the time reduced at the Match Officials discretion.  The half time break shall not exceed five (5) minutes, except by the consent of the Match Official. Any water breaks must be agreed upon by both teams prior to the start of the game and implemented equally in both the first and second half of play. 11v11 games will consist of ten (10) outfield players and a goalkeeper.

Video and Audio Recording

Grand River Soccer Club has the right to record video and audio of all Club events. Recordings can be shared by the Club to its members and the public. The Club can also share with disciplinary committees, match officials, member associations, and law enforcement at the Club’s discretion. Members should seek Club approval before recording and must have Club approval to share their content with others.

The Ball

The home team will supply 2 outdoor regulation size 5 balls for the match.  If additional balls are required to continue the game, then they should also be supplied by the home team.

Start and Restart of Play

The game shall commence from the center circle on the game official’s signal. The ball can be played in any direction. If the ball goes out of play on the sidelines, then the game will be restarted with a throw-in.  If the ball goes out of play on the end lines, then the game will be restarted with a goal kick or corner kick. When a goal is scored the game will restart with a kickoff from center. The game may not restart until both teams are set in their own half.  Defending players must retreat 10 yards from the point of any restart. Any attempt to delay a restart may result in a caution.


Each team is allowed unlimited substitutions, which must be made at the halfway line with the permission of the Match Officials. Substitutions can only be made at the following times:  At a goal kick, when a goal is scored, at the start of the second half, on a team’s own throw-in (piggy-backing on the opposing teams throw-in is allowed), and when a player is injured at the Match Officials discretion. The game will not be delayed to allow substitutions, except for the substitution of an injured player or the goalkeeper. The match officials must be notified and allow permission for a goalkeeper substitution during a stoppage of play. Any substitute shall not enter the field until the player being replaced is off the field. Players coming off should exit the field at halfway line, near their team bench, or the nearest touchline if directed by the Match Officials. Any abuse of these rules could result in a caution.


Grand River Soccer is a Member of Ontario Soccer and Southwest Soccer. We have been delegated by Southwest Soccer the responsibility to conduct Discipline Hearings for certain types of misconducts. All Discipline will be conducted using the Discipline by Review (DBR) System when possible. Some cases, such as those involving the physical assault of a Match Official, shall be handled as per the Policy of Ontario Soccer. Members charged have the right to request a Discipline by Hearing (DBH). These requests must be submitted in writing to Grand River Soccer’s Discipline Coordinator via email to [email protected] within 72 hours of the start of the match in which the dismissal was received except in cases of Ontario Soccer Misconduct Type 1.3, 1.5, and 1.6. An administrative Hearing Request Fee of $100.00 must be submitted at the time of any DBH request. If found not guilty, the fee will be refunded. Discipline decisions made under the Discipline by Review system may not be appealed. There is a non-refundable administrative fee of $60 for all Discipline By Review cases.

All Members are expected to review our Discipline policy online for more specific information, hearing dates, and links to the Standard Penalties For Misconduct.

Video evidence is admissible providing it adds clarity to the issues surrounding the incident in question. Video cannot be used to evaluate Referee performance.

Any discipline fines or administration fees levied against a team must be paid before their next game to avoid being ruled a forfeit.

Any discipline fines or administration fees levied against a member must be paid before they are eligible to resume play.

Unpaid discipline fees or fines that extend beyond 120 days past due will incur a reinstatement fee of $60 and may result in membership suspension, cancellation or decline.


A game will not be delayed or postponed due to protest at the field. It must be played under protest with the protest clearly noted on the game sheet by the match officials. Furthermore, a protest regarding the eligibility of a player or team official must be brought forward before, during, or at half time of the game in question. A protest regarding the eligibility of a player or team official will not be considered after the start of the second half of the game in question.

No protest pertaining to a decision of the game official with regards to Laws of the Game will be entertained. The game official shall be the sole judge of the amount of time played, and their decision on the matter shall not be subject to protest.

Any protest shall be submitted in writing to the Club Administrator by an authorized team representative and accompanied by the protest fee of $100 sent via electronic fund transfer within 48 hours of the scheduled kick-off time.

The written submission of a protest shall include the following:

  • Name of protesting team
  • Date of game, location, and kick-off time
  • Division
  • Name of opposing team
  • Rule(s) which were violated
  • Any additional information to support the protest

Correctly submitted protests, within the specified deadlines, shall be heard by the Discipline Committee. Protests which do not meet the requirements shall be declared out of order and not heard.

The Protest Fee of $100 will be refunded if the protest is successful.

Schedule and Format

The Club will advise teams of the schedule and format prior to the start of each season or competition. The schedule and format may be adjusted without notice.

League and Division Standings

Points will be awarded as follows: 3 points for a win, 1 point for a tie, and 0 points for a loss. The first place team at the end of the regular season will be declared the League Champion. When multiple divisions are established the first place team in each division will be declared the Division Champion. In the event of a tie in the League or Division Standings the following criteria, in priority order, will be used to determine the official final League or Division Standings: greater number of wins, head-to-head record, total goal difference, total goals for, and total goals against. Should any teams remain tied after all criteria have been applied the winner will be decided by a coin toss conducted by a team official from each team involved in the tie along with a Club official.

Playoffs, Cup Games, Tournaments, and Other Competitions

Any specific standings criteria for additional games will supersede the regular standings criteria. The winner of the Playoffs will be declared the Cup Champion. Round robin cup games can end in a tie if the competition rules permit. Knock-out (elimination) cup games can not end in a tie. Should a tie occur in a knock-out game after regulation time has expired, the winner will be decided by penalty kicks as directed by the game official. Three shooters from each team who were on the field at the conclusion of play will be selected to take the penalty kicks. In the event of tie after each team has taken 3 penalty kicks, one additional penalty kick will be taken by each team until a clear winner has been decided. Each player can only take one penalty kick. In the situation where each available player has taken a penalty kick and no other players are available this rule will no longer apply. If the two teams do not have the same number of total available players, then the team with more players must reduce to equate to the team with less players. The game official directs and has final say in all penalty kick decisions.

Club Tie Breakers

Unless otherwise stated in the rules of a specific Club competition, then the following criteria shall be used to determine standings or seeding, in priority order.

  1. Points
  2. Greater Number of Wins
  3. Head-to-Head Record
  4. Total Goal Difference
  5. Greater Goals For
  6. Fewest Goals Against
  7. Coin Toss

Game Suspension Due to the Conduct of a Player, Team Official, Team or Spectators

If game play is suspended by the game official and not restarted prior to full time due to the conduct of a player, team official, team or spectators, then the offending team will forfeit the game. The opposing team will be awarded 3 points and their “goals for” will be recorded in full. The “goals for” of the offending team will be recorded as 0 in the game results. If the game result was a 0-0 draw or the opposing team had not scored, they will be awarded a 1-0 win.

If game play is suspended by the game official and not restarted prior to full time due to the conduct of the players, team officials or spectators from both teams, then the score at the time of the game suspension will be recorded as the final score if more than 60 minutes has been played. If less than 60 minutes have been played the game will be recorded as 0-0. If the game is a playoff, cup, or knock-out game, then neither team may advance. The Club reserves the right to award zero points to any teams involved in these situations and future participation with the Club may be subject to review.

Game Suspensions Resulting from Other Conditions

If game play is suspended by the game official and not restarted prior to full time due to other outside circumstances including, but not limited to, injury, weather, lighting, or facility failures, then the score at the time of the game suspension will be recorded as the final score if more than 60 minutes has been played. If less than 60 minutes have been played the game will be considered incomplete by the Club. The teams involved in the incomplete game will be responsible for notifying the Club within 24 hours of the scheduled start time. All incomplete games will be rescheduled as soon as possible based on facility availability. Teams will receive a minimum of 24 hours’ notice for the reschedule of incomplete games.

Postponements and No-Show

Due to the complexity of scheduling games and limited field resources, requests for postponing or rescheduling games from teams will not be considered. The Club may postpone or reschedule at their discretion. The game official may postpone or reschedule due to unplayable conditions.

In the event that a team fails to show up and no game is played then they will be subject to an administrative fee of $100.00. The fee is increased to $250.00 for a second offence in a playing season. The administrative fee may be waived by the Club if more than 72 hours’ notice is provided in writing to the Club administrator at [email protected].

Zero Tolerance Policy

Everyone is responsible for their own behavior. Each team is responsible for the behavior of their players and spectators.  Only individuals identified on the game sheet are allowed in the playing field area and team bench area.

In order to promote a safe and sportsmanlike environment for its members, Grand River Soccer Club has clarified its stance on unsportsmanlike behavior. All members must understand the expectations before joining the Club. Team Captains and Managers are required to ask players to leave the game/playing field area if they are involved in any of the following acts:

  • Swearing directly at another person
  • Intentionally pushing, shoving, or making physical contact with another person
  • Making comments to instigate an altercation
  • Spitting at another person

Fighting will not be tolerated.  Anyone involved in a physical altercation will have their Club membership suspended until a discipline decision has been issued. The Club reserves the right to cancel individual and team membership without refund in addition to any discipline decision rendered.

Administrative Fees

Administrative fees may be charged in addition to registration fees and discipline fees. Any fees not outlined in the Clubs governing documents will be assessed at a rate of $50/hour. Invoices unrelated to discipline that remain unpaid for 90 days or more may incur an additional fee of $100 and become subject to referral to a third party collection service. Unpaid fines or fees may result in membership suspension, cancellation or decline.

League Review

A review shall be completed by the league to determine whether a member team or individual shall be subjected to a fee and / or face dismissal from the Club for any of the infractions listed below:

  1. Any team found guilty of a second offence for playing ineligible players
  2. Any team that assaults a referee.
  3. Any special incident report received

If a situation cannot be clearly resolved by the stated rules or is not covered or there is confusion, then the Club or their representative shall make the final decision.

The Club Management Committee will have final discretion on all matters.