Rule 1:

Each team and/or club shall be responsible for the conduct of its officers, managers, coaches, players, members, parents and fans.  Only coaches are to be in the coach’s box during the game.  It is the responsibility of each team to ensure that its actions on or off the field do not bring disrespect upon this League.

Rule 2:  Disciplinary Rulings and Minimum Punishments

  1. Players guilty of fighting before, during or after games shall receive a minimum two (2) game suspension for the first offense.  For a second offense within two (2) seasonal years, the player will appear before the Disciplinary Board and may be suspended for a period up to one (1) year.
  2. Players guilty of using profanity, either by word or sign, against other players,  coaches, spectators, referees or any League official shall receive a minimum two (2) game suspension.
  3. Players guilty of making threatening gestures against other players, coaches, spectators, referees, or any League official shall receive a minimum one (1) game suspension.
  4. Players guilty of pushing or striking any coach or official shall receive a one (1) year suspension.
  5. Any player or team official sent off the field by the referee shall receive a minimum one (1) game suspension.
  6. Any player or team official receiving three (3) cautions, i.e., yellow cards, within a seasonal year shall be dealt with as in section E above.
  7. Coaches or team officials who make threatening gestures or use threatening language will be disciplined according to the following:
    1. First offense: The offender shall appear before the League Disciplinary Panel and shall be suspended for a minimum of two (2) games and a maximum of four (4) games if found guilty.
    2. Second offense:  (within three [3] seasonal years) The offender may be suspended for a period not less than one (1) year.
  8. Coaches or team officials who fight at any time shall be disciplined according to the following schedule:
    1. First offense:  The offender shall be suspended a minimum of one (1) year.
    2. Second offense:  Suspended for not less than three (3) years.
  9. Any player or team official who has been suspended shall not be on or in the vicinity of the field during games from which he is suspended.
  10. Any club or club official guilty of violating MYSL rules and regulations or the laws of the game may be fined or otherwise dealt with by the Commissioner or the Disciplinary Panel.

Rule 3:  Insurance

All Players registered with the League shall be required to have in effect a medical insurance program specified by the League.

  1. Report of Insurance Claim:
    • All injuries to be claimed against the medical insurance shall be complete and on the proper form (obtainable from the person in charge of insurance).  All reports of injuries must be submitted to the above-mentioned person within seventy-two (72) hours of the injury.

Rule 4:  Rules of Play

Rules of Play shall be the Laws of the Game as published by FIFA.  All contests sanctioned by this League shall abide by the “Laws of the Game” and the modifications as published by the League.

Section 1:

Coaching from the sidelines – giving one’s own team points of strategy and position – is permitted, provided:

  1. No mechanical devices are used
  2. Tone of voice is informative and not a harangue.
  3. Only coaches are allowed in the coach’s box during the game. Teams shall take opposite sidelines for their bench.  Home teams have choice of preferred sideline.  Infraction of this rule constitutes unsportsmanlike-like conduct and is subject to disciplinary action.
Section 2:

Where colors of uniform are similar, the home team must effect a change to colors that are distinct from those of the opponent.

Section 3:

The home team and/or club will be responsible for the condition of the grounds, the proper field markings and proper equipment.  Fields must be marked in accordance with FIFA rules with the addition of a “Coach’s Box” on both sides of the field.  The coach’s box shall extend between the eighteen yard lines four (4) feet from the touchline.

Nets and corner flags are required.  It will be the responsibility of the teams to have a game ball and to see that their fans behave in a proper and respectful manner.

Failure in any of the above will result in disciplinary action.

Rule 5:  Age Limit Definition

The term “youth” as applied to this Constitution shall mean any amateur player who has not attained his or her 19thbirthday before the first day of August preceding the seasonal year in which he or she applies for registration.

Section 1:  Attaining Age Limit

Players attaining the limiting age for any age group on or after August 1st will be eligible to play for the full seasonal year.

Section 2:  Reinstated Player

A reinstated player shall mean a player who has been reinstated to an amateur youth status.

Section 3:  Age Groups

All teams, unless otherwise sanctioned by the Board, shall divide play among teams of equal age groupings.Included age groups are:  U-5, U-6, U-7, U-8, U-9, U-10, U-11, U-12, U-13, U-14, U-15, U-16, U-17, U-18 and U-19.

Rule 6: Proof of Age

Section 1:  Authority to Contest

Any player can be called upon to prove his or her legal age by the Board,  the Registrar, or the League Commissioner.

Section 2:  Legal Proof of Age

A birth certificate, passport, board of health records, certificate of naturalization or alien registration card shall be sufficient for proof of age.

Rule 7:  Player registration, League Entry and Team Affiliation Requirements 

Section 1:  Proper Registration Procedure
  1. All players are required to submit a properly completed player registration form, with the required number of pictures. The submittal of such form binds that player to that club or team for the seasonal year unless granted a transfer or release under rule 10.  Coaches and assistants are required to submit pictures for coach passcards.
  2. Each club or team shall be required to submit to the appropriate League officer various forms as may be required for the operation of the League, including the appropriate number and type of Club Passcard identifications, if participating in the Club Passcard program.
  3. Prior to each fall and spring season, by dates established by the Executive Board, each team must submit properly completed affiliation, registration and roster forms to the appropriate Registrar, along with the established fees.  Only those properly registered players appearing on the roster form are eligible to play that season.  No player may be added to the roster after deadlines have passed, unless granted a hardship ruling by the Executive Board.
  4. Each team official (i.e., coach, assistant, coach, manager) shall be listed on the team affiliation form and roster.
  5. No player shall be registered to play for more than one team within this League.  No player shall play concurrently on any USSF-affiliated league team outside this League without obtaining the approval of the Executive Board. MYSL does permit the use of club passcards, whose rules and regulations are incorporated with these By-Laws.
  6. Registration for high school age boys shall be for a single season and not the seasonal year.
Section 2:  Requirements for Player Possession of Player Passcard
  1. The Registrar shall issue, or cause to be issued, a valid registration passcard to eligible players, coaches, and assistant coaches.
  2. All players, coaches and assistant coaches must present their passcards to the opposing team’s manager prior to the start of the game if requested. Suspended players must be clearly marked on the line-up sheet and participants not in possession of a passcard must print their name and sign the back of the white copy of the game report sheet.
  3. Should players misplace their passcards, they shall be permitted to play in the game. However, they shall be open to “Challenge” by the opposing team.  It shall be the responsibility of the manager/coach to notify the referee, prior to the game, whether any players or coaches are not in possession of their passcards.  (See Rule 8; Challenge of Player not in Possession of Player Passcard).
  4. If the designated coach and/or assistant is not present, the referee may inquire as to their whereabouts, and take appropriate action where necessary if either is in the vicinity of the field.

Rule 8:  Challenge of Player not in Possession of Player Passcard. 

Section 1:  Procedure and Penalties
  1. If a player does not present a player pass to the opposing team’s manager/coach prior to the game, they are open to “Challenge” by the Coach of the other team.
  2. If a coach desires to challenge, he shall notify the referee and the opposing coach that the player is under “Challenge” (not to be confused with Protest) prior to the start of the game.
  3. The player(s) being challenged shall give their name to the opposing team and this information will be noted on the referee report in addition to complying with Section 2 B.
  4. The challenging coach shall then contact the League Registrar and League Commissioner for verification that the challenged player(s) is(are) properly registered. If the Registrar’s records show the player is properly registered, the matter is finished.
  5. If the player is not properly registered, their team shall automatically forfeit that game and may face further disciplinary action by the League and/or the MSYSA Board, depending on the nature of the violation.
  6. If the coach and/or assistant coach are not in possession of either their risk management cards or their passcards, the opposing team must note on the referee report the name, address and telephone number of the person(s) acting as coach or assistant, and each will be required to sign the line-up sheet.  Coaches and assistants participating in games when not in possession of their risk management cards or their passcards may be dealt with by the Disciplinary Committee.
  7. In case of forfeiture, the score shall stand 1-0 against the forfeiting team.

Rule 9:  Senior Amateur Trial Games

Any youth player wishing to try for a senior amateur team must make application through the Registrar.  Any youth player who plays for a senior team without obtaining the necessary approvals shall be declared ineligible for youth games.

Rule 10:  Player Transfer, Release, Roster Limit and Tryouts

 Section 1: Player Registration..
  1. A registered player shall be committed to a team for a seasonal year. Once registered, and in the absence of mitigating circumstances, a player must remain with his/her team in the league in which his/her team participates until the completion of the spring session.
  2. Any attempt to induce a player to change teams for either the current or the following seasonal year during the session(s) in which his/her team is in competition shall be poaching in violation of Rule 11.  During the time that a team has suspended league play, players and club or team officers or representatives may freely discuss new affiliation for the following seasonal year.
  3. MYSL registered players who participate on high school teams and who play only during the one session of a seasonal year are expected to play in tournaments and cup games with the team to which they are rostered through June 30 of the seasonal year or until granted a proper transfer or release.
  4. If a fall session girl’s team disbands or suspends play for the spring session because a majority of the team is playing high school sports, those players wishing to play on  another MSYSA affiliated team in the spring may be considered new players and not transfer players.
  5. Registration for high school-aged players’ teams shall be for a single session and not the seasonal year.
Section 2: Voluntary and Involuntary Releases.

A player’s right to a voluntary release is absolute and may not be challenged; no player is required to play for a team he/she no longer wishes to play for. Upon receipt of the proper, complete and approved paperwork, the player will be considered released. It is the coach’s responsibility to return a released player’s passcard to the appropriate MYSL Registrar to consider the team roster spot available.

Additionally, releases will be granted if:

  1. The original team suspends operations for the remainder of the seasonal year, or
  2. The player moves to a new address, a distance which, in the opinion of the Board or its delegates, would make it impractical for him to continue with the original team, or
  3. There are mitigating circumstances which, in the opinion of the Board or its delegates, justify a release.
    1. Involuntary releases will be granted if:
      1. The player has violated rules of this Association or League and has been suspended for a period of time greater than five (5) games, or
      2. The player is injured in such a manner that the player will not be able to participate for the remainder of the season, or
      3. The player moves to a new address, a distance which in the opinion of the Board or its delegates would make it impractical for him/her to continue with the original team.

In any of the above cases, where a player seeks a voluntary release or transfer or a team seeks to involuntarily release a player, a Player Release/Transfer Form must be completed by the player and/or team.  The form, with appropriate fees, must be submitted for approval by MYSL.

Section 3:  Player Transfers.

A player may transfer between MYSL teams between seasons of a seasonal year if the transfer is approved by both coaches, the clubs or league and the MYSL.  The new team must have room on its roster to accept the transfer player. During any seasonal year, a team may have no more than two (2) transfer players on its roster unless granted a hardship ruling by the Executive Board.  Any team accepting transferred players or adding players not previously registered, shall be re-evaluated for divisional alignment.

A team is considered “hardship” when its roster is legally reduced to 13 players, except U-12 and U-11 which shall be 10 players and U-9 and U-10 which shall be 8 players. Application for player transfer must be made to the MYSL on the required forms.

Section 4:  Player Roster Limits.

Teams playing age divisions U-9 and U-10 shall have no more than eleven (11) players registered at any time.  Teams playing U-11 and U-12 shall have no more than fourteen (14) players.  All other teams shall have no more than eighteen (18).

Section 5:  Registration and Transfer Cut-off Dates.

The Executive Board will set cut-off dates for each playing or seasonal year.

Section 6:  Date of Registration.

A player is registered the moment the player and his/her parent or guardian (if the player is under 18 years of age) signs the League Player Registration form, submits any fees due at that time and is accepted by a responsible team/club/league official.

 Section 7: Multiple Rostering.

A player may register with more than one team per seasonal year.  The following restrictions apply to multiple registration.

  1. A player cannot play for more than one team in the MYSL.
  2. The team with which a multiple rostered player first registers shall be designated as his primary team and the other his secondary team.  On days on which both teams have games, the player must play for his/her primary team, if he/she plays.  If both teams enter the same competition, (State Cup, tournaments, etc.) the player must play for his/her primary team.
    Any player who registers for a team without informing the responsible team official that he/she is already registered with another team shall be assumed to be a single rostered player.  Should the player subsequently request approval of a multiple rostering form with that team shown as his/her secondary team, the team has the right to insist that it be shown as the primary team.  If the coaches of the two teams disagree on the designation of the primary team, the player may not play until the issue has been resolved via the appeals process.
  3. A multiple rostered player shall be issued a single USYSA passcard by the league for his/her primary team. The passcard shall indicate the primary team and the secondary team.  The league for the secondary team shall not issue a player passcard, but shall allow the player to play in its league using his/her passcard showing both teams.

Rule 11:  Poaching

Any club or team which, through its responsible officers or representatives, attempts at any time to induce a registered player of any team under the jurisdiction of this League, during the session the team is in competition or prior to June 15, to change teams for either the current seasonal year or the following seasonal year, shall be deemed to have committed the offense of POACHING and shall be dealt with by the League Commissioner subject to Executive Board approval and recommendations.

Rule 12:  Professional Status

Any player signing a “letter of intent,” a professional contract, or playing with a professional team without the permission of the USSF Affiliate League shall be declared a professional.

Section 1:

The MSYSA Board along with the Michigan Interscholastic Association may grant a youth amateur permission to play in benefit or exhibition games only, where professional players are involved.

Section 2:

No player who has signed a “letter of intent,” a contract, or played in any game where professional players are involved without permission of the MSYSA Board will be permitted to be reinstated to a youth amateur status.

Rule 13:  League Play

Section 1:

Length of games and ball size for each group and overtime (if provided by the current League rules).

League(s) Length of Game Overtime Periods Ball Size
U-19, -18, -17, Youth 80 minutes
(40 minute halves)
Two 15 minute periods.
(5 minute rest between)
U-16, -15, Youth 80 minutes
(40 minute halves)
Two 15 minute periods.
(5 minute rest between)
U-14, -13, Youth 70 minutes
(35 minute halves)
Two 10 minute periods.
(5 minute rest between)
U-12, -11, Youth 60 minutes
(30 minute halves)
Two 10 minute periods.
(5 minute rest between)
U-10, -9, -8, Youth 50 minutes
(25 minute halves)
Two 10 minute periods.
(5 minute rest between)
Section 2:

Players may be substituted only during a stoppage of the game [Law 3, International Board Decision # 6, and Law # 9, Paragraphs (a) and (b)].  Number of substitutions shall be unlimited unless a competition superceding MYSL jurisdiction specifically determines otherwise.  Substitutions may be made:

1.  Prior to a throw-in, your favor
2.  Prior to a goal kick by either team
3.  After a goal by either team
4.  After an injury on either team
5.  At half time

 In any case, a substitute may not enter the field of play until they have been given asignal to do so by the referee.

Section 3:

If the two teams in age groups U-13 and higher both have at least seven (7) players, the game shall start on the scheduled time. For U-11 and U-12 age groups, there must be at least seven (7) players. For U-9 and U-10 age groups, there must be at least five (5) players. Otherwise they shall start when the two teams have reached that number.

In no case shall they start later than fifteen (15) minutes from the scheduled time.  After the fifteen (15) minutes have elapsed, the FIFA rule will be applied as to what constitutes a team.

Section 4:

In League play-off games, should the score be tied at the end of regulation play, two (2) overtime periods shall be played as specified under Section 1 of this Article.  In the event no winner is determined after overtime play, then both teams will take five (5) penalty kicks (Rule 8, USYSA) alternating one (1) at a time until a winner is determined.

Section 5:

The referee in all games shall be appointed by the Board or its delegate.  In the event of nonappearance of the appointed referee, the opposing coaches/managers should agree to a solution in writing noted on the back of the game report and signed by both coaches.  In that case, the game is to be played and will be official.  If agreement is impossible, then the matter will be referred to the League Commissioner for action. The referee shall comply with the “Youth Soccer Score Reporting Procedure.”  Referees will officiate the game in accordance with current MYSL Rules and Regulations.

The referees may at any time be called at any time by the League Commissioner to review a game report.

Rule 14:  Protests and Appeals

Section 1:

Should any person, team, or club want to protest or appeal any decision, the line of authority shall be:  To the League Commissioner, then to the League Disciplinary Panel, then to the Executive Board, then to the District Appeals Committee (if one exists), then to the MSYSA Appeals Committee, then to the line of authority as specified by the USYSA.

Section 2:

The Commissioner shall deal with all protests and appeals arising out of any league games. Protests and appeals are to be written or typed and sent to the Commissioner, in triplicate by registered mail within three (3) calendar days following the date of the match or the disciplinary decision being protested.  The protest fee (a $100.00 check made payable to MYSL) must be enclosed with all protests.

Section 3:

The protest fee will be returned if upheld.  It will not be returned if denied or unless the Disciplinary Panel is overruled by a higher authority.

Section 4:

The referee’s judgment with regard to the physical condition of the field and its acceptance for play, to the actual happening and occurrences related to the conduct of the game and to those prerogatives granted to him by the “Laws of the Game” published by  F.I.F.A. SHALL NOT BE SUBJECT TO CHALLENGE.

Section 5:

Only violation of the Constitution of the League, its By-Laws, Rules and Regulations, and misapplication of the law shall be proper subjects  to consider as protests.

Section 6:
    1. Protests will be acted upon by the League Commissioner within six (6) days of his receipt of the protest or before the next regularly scheduled game, whichever occurs first.  His action will be reported to the involved parties within this time limit.
    2. Appeals will be made in the same manner as protests and will be accompanied by a $100.00 check made payable to MYSL.  An appeal will be acted upon by the Disciplinary Panel at a hearing convened within fifteen (15) days of their receipt of said appeal by the chairperson of the Disciplinary Panel.  The affected parties will be invited to this hearing.The hearing shall be conducted under these By-Laws and shall comply with USSF Bylaw 701 and USSF Policy 701-1, along with the Rules and Regulations of the MYSL.
    3. Disqualification, suspension, other disciplinary action, or dismissal of charges will take effect following the ruling of Disciplinary Panel.

Rule 15:

Trophies will be awarded to the first- and second-place teams (first place only if division of five teams or less), with the exception that all players in the U-10 and younger age divisions shall only receive a participation award.

Rule 16:

The MYSL Executive Board shall be responsible for establishing referee’s fees for all games played under the jurisdiction of MYSL.

Rule 17:

Affiliated Clubs/Leagues may deem fit to enact rules and regulations more stringent than those included herein, but in no case may their rules and regulations be less stringent than these MYSL By-Laws.

Rule 18:

A plea of ignorance to these By-Laws and Rules and Regulations is not sufficient and violators may expect appropriate action by the Executive Board of this League.