Rules 1.0 – 4.2
The Association season will run from early Fall of one year until the late Spring of the next year and will be made up of a Fall “Round” (1st Round) and a Spring “Round” (2nd Round). Additionally, there shall be a Summer Season that shall extend from June to August. Teams that enter the Summer Season shall play in the highest division for which they qualify based on the regular season standings. All schedules shall be subject to the approval of the Executive Committee.
The Association shall sponsor league play in two competitions, an Open competition and an Age Restricted competition. Any team meeting the general requirements of the Association may enter the Open competition. Teams in the Age Restricted competition must be composed entirely of players who meet the age requirements for that division, subject to the Age Restricted Rules of Competition (Article 7).
1. The number of teams in a division shall normally be ten, except when necessary to accommodate a workable schedule among all registered teams.
2. Except as provided in Rule 1.3.4 (adjustments to classification), teams in each open-age division who finish first and second at the end of the annual season shall be promoted to the next higher division, and teams finishing last and next to last shall be relegated to the next lower division. In the age-restricted divisions, within each age group that has more than one division, the lowest-ranking team shall be relegated and the highest-ranking team in each Division shall be promoted.
A team added to a division after the beginning of the season shall be eligible for the championship and for promotion based on results for the entire Season, but shall be subject to relegation based only on results from the date such team was added. (For example, if a team is added to a division at the beginning of the second Round, their eligibility for championship and promotion would be determined by comparing their total points in the second Round to the total points of each other team during the entire season. But their liability to relegation would be determined by comparing their total points to the total points of each other team during only the second Round.)
Notwithstanding the foregoing, teams in the Open competition shall not be relegated to an Age-Restricted competition, and teams in an Age-Restricted Competition shall not be promoted to the Open competition. Nor shall teams in one Age-Restricted competition be subject to promotion or relegation to a chronologically-different Age-Restricted competition (for example, from Over-30 to Over-40).
3. A new team wishing to join the Open or the Age-Restricted Competition shall submit their application to the Competition Committee, who shall place them in a division appropriate to their competitive level, taking into consideration the factors set out in 1.3-4 below.
4. Notwithstanding any other provision of these Rules, any team may appeal their classification prior to the start of the next season. An appeal may be taken as to promotion, relegation, or any decision affecting classification other than initial placement of a new team. Appeal shall lie to the Competition Committee and the Commissioners of the affected divisions, in consultation with the President and Administrator (hereinafter referred to as the “Competition Committee”).
The Competition Committee shall have the power to adjust the classification of an appealing team. In determining whether to make adjustments, the Committee shall seek to promote parity of competition in any divisions affected by the proposed adjustment. The Committee shall consider the following specific matters:
a. The competitive level of the appealing team, as evidenced by (1) their won-loss and goals-for-versus-goals-against record in the preceding season; (2) the loss or addition of players; and (3) any relevant information as to the competitive level of the team.
b. The impact on other teams in any division affected by the proposed adjustment; and
c. The wishes of other teams in any division affected by the proposed adjustment.
If the considerations for-and-against an appeal are evenly balanced, the appeal shall be resolved in favor of placing the appealing team in a division having an odd-number of teams, in preference to one having an even-number of teams.
5. In addition to the foregoing, the Competition Committee shall have general authority to adjust the classification of any team, taking into consideration the factors set out in 1.3-4 above, so long as the adjustment does not deprive a team of a right to promotion or relegation, or violate some other rule of the Association.
1.4 STANDINGS AND CHAMPIONS
The standings for each division shall include only those teams active in that division at the end of a Season. Standings shall be based on all games played in the division since the beginning of the season, subject to Rule 1.3-2 above regarding promotion and relegation. The teams shall be ordered by the following measures:
1. Total points (three points for a win, one point for a tie).
2. Goal difference, that is, goals scored minus goals conceded.
3. Number of wins.
4. Goals scored.
5. Coin toss.
Forfeits shall count as wins or losses with the team awarded the forfeit winning by 3 goals. In addition, should any team drop out or be suspended from further play, all games involving that team for the entire season shall be considered “non-counting” games whose results will not be counted in league standings. Notwithstanding the foregoing, if a team has played all of its games in the first round before dropping out or being suspended, their results in the first round shall be counted in the standings.
2.1 REGISTRATION FEES, PROCEDURES AND DEADLINES
The Association shall establish rules and policy governing the procedure, deadlines and fees for registration of both teams and players.
Please see the AMSA Team and Player Registration Policy for more information.
All teams shall be registered with the Association. Teams may become affiliated with the Texas State Soccer Association South (TSSAS), USSSA Soccer, the United States Soccer Federation (USSF), and the Federation Internationale de Football Association (FIFA), along with the United States Amateur Soccer Association (USASA), and other soccer-related organizations. Teams will be responsible for registering on or before such deadlines as are set for league, tournament, and State or National Cup play.
Any bona fide organization with written By-Laws and a unified governing body may register with the Association as a club. A club may register one or more teams in each competition. All such teams must play under the club name with qualifying suffixes to distinguish the teams. A club need not enter more than one team.
3.3 PLAYER REGISTRATION
1. Basic and Multiple Registration. Every player must be registered and obtain from the Association a player registration card. A player may register with any other team or teams in any other division as long as the player meets the division requirements. Player(s) are not considered to be registered until a player card has been issued to that player and the player has been listed on the official roster.
2. Minimum Age Requirement. A player must be 18 years of age at the time of registration. No one under the age of 18 years shall be permitted to register or play in AMSA.
A registered player may move from one team or club to another by submitting to the Registrar his old player registration card and an additional player registration fee. The Registration is considered effective when (1) the new card is issued; (2) the player has been removed from his old team’s roster and (3) the player has been added to the new team’s roster. Approval is not required from the old team’s Captain, provided that (a) the player does not have any outstanding fines or team dues, and (b) the Registrar (Administrator) shall provide notice of the transfer to said Captain.
a. From the beginning of the season until the end of February a player may change teams without delay once provided all of the proper procedures have been followed. A player who changes teams a second time during this interval is not eligible to play in the next four games played by the new team.
b. From March 1 until the start of the summer season no transfers will be permitted.
c. The four game sit-out requirement shall be waived for players changing from teams that have folded in mid-season. The Executive Committee or its agents may also waive the requirement if the player can show that he did not play in the preceding four games played by the team he is leaving.
d. This rule does not apply to multiple registrations.
4.1 PREGAME PROCEDURES
4.1.1. GAME ROSTER
Before each game, each team captain shall present the Referee a standard team roster form listing the names and jersey numbers of all players registered with the team. A standard team roster form shall be issued by the Registrar. Teams will be responsible in duplicating the form for game use. It is the responsibility of the team captain to insure that all players listed are registered and eligible to play at the time of the game. A duly-registered player may be written in on the roster prior to the start of the match. A player who is not registered with the team or who is under suspension from any team for whom he is registered is an ineligible player and may not play, even if he produces a player card. Failure to submit the standard team roster form may result in disciplinary action to the team. An ineligible player who participates in a match shall be grounds for a forfeit and possible further disciplinary action by the Discipline and Procedures Committee.
In lieu of providing an approved roster, a team may provide a hand-written roster, so long as it contains the name and date of birth of each participating player, and so long as each participating player produces a current registration card or government-issued photo-ID.
4.1.2. PLAYER CARDS
Each player should present a properly laminated player registration card with current team and season information, signed by the Registrar. In the event a player whose name is on the roster and who is not suspended does not have a registration card available, he may present a government-issued photo ID.
1. All field players must have uniforms comprising shirts, shorts, socks that are a close match or similar to that teams designated color for each part of the uniform. The jerseys must be numbered permanently on the back with at least eight inch numerals. Players may not change numbers during the game. “Magic Marker” or similar marking material and taped on numbers are not allowed. Referees shall waive the foregoing rules so long as a team’s uniforms are in substantial compliance.
2. Shin guards must be worn at all times. In the event that a player is not wearing them he will be asked to leave the field to put on a pair. Socks must cover shin guards during play.
3. No two field players may have the same number.
4. If one Captain and the Referee agree that there is a color conflict, the designated visiting team must change. A color conflict exists when the uniforms of both teams are so similar that confusion is likely to result.
5. Fitbits and similar wearable technology devices must be covered by a wristband.
4.1.4. STARTING TIMES
If one or both teams are not ready at the scheduled time, the referee shall allow a ten minute grace period. “Ready” means having a roster card ready and at least seven players in uniform, ready for inspection of equipment. If a team is not present and ready after the ten minute grace period and the other is ready, the ready team may choose to allow an additional ten minute grace period, or to require the referee to forfeit the game in their favor immediately. If a team is not ready after the second grace period, the match shall be forfeited against them. After the grace period(s) and the game is played, the delay time will be deducted from game time if necessary to accommodate the ending time. All 8:00 am games will start on time. In the event a start-time is delayed because one or both teams are not ready, the match may be shortened as needed; and in such event, both halves will be shortened accordingly. A match may not be shortened because a referee is not ready.
4.1.5. ENDING TIMES
Unless delay results because a referee is not ready, all games must end at least ten minutes before the next game scheduled on the same field. If necessary, the referee shall hold the half-time to five minutes and shorten both halves equally in order to end on time. If there is no following game, the game should be played full length.
4.2 GAME RULES
All games shall be played under then current FIFA rules with the following exceptions and additions:
1. Games may be scheduled on fields that do not meet FIFA rules regarding size, markings, and equipment such as corner flags.
2. Substitutions shall be permitted in accordance with FIFA rules with the following differences:
a. All players and substitutes must be listed on the roster.
b. A player removed for a substitute may later reenter the game.
c. There is no limit on the number of substitutions.
d. A team may substitute only with the permission of the referee. Teams may request permission during a stoppage of play for a goal-kick, after a goal, at half-time, or for a throw-in to be taken by the substituting team. The referee should also permit a substitution on the same team for an injured player or a player who has just been cautioned.
3. No more than four (4) multiple players may play in any one match for a team other than their primary team. This Rule must be invoked before the start of the match in question by notifying the Referee and the opposing team, or it shall be considered waived. If more than four (4) multiple players play in a match after the Rule has been invoked, the offending team shall be penalized with forfeiture of the match and a $50 fine.
As amended by the AMSA Board of Captains on August 31, 2020.