D. Tournament Format
All teams are scheduled to have three preliminary games, two on Saturday and one on Sunday. However, a team’s initial Sunday game may serve as quarter-final, semi-final, or final game depending on the numbers of teams involved in the age group. There will be no overtime periods in the preliminary games. In the event of a tie at the end of regulation play in semi-final or final matches, the winner will be decided as outlined in Paragraph N. below.
Academy teams (U8, U9, and U10 6v6 player) will ONLY participate in preliminary games. There will be no semi-final or final matches for these Academy tournaments. The U10 8v8 player Academy tournament may have finals (and semi-finals) depending on the number of teams participating.
E. Rules of Play
Except in connection with U8, U9, and U-10(6v6) Academy where there will be no offsides, FIFA “Laws of the Game”, as modified by the USYSA shall be used for all games. Any situation or question on rules of competition not covered herein will be governed by ASSA and USYSA Administrative Rule Books, in that order. Any matters not provided for in tournament rules or USYSA or ASSA shall be determined by the tournament committee, whose decisions shall be final.
Substitutions may be made with the consent of the referee in accordance with FIFA Law as modified by the USYSA. Either coach may make substitutions after a caution.
G. Home Team
The home team will be listed first in the game schedule. The home team will be required to wear their white or light colored jersey; the away team their dark colored jersey. The referee will require the home team to change to an alternate jersey if they decide the team’s colors are too similar. The home team will provide the game ball. The referee will handle game balls.
H. Game Reports
The referee shall be in charge of the game balls and game reports and shall submit the report before receiving any compensation for a game. The Tournament Committee and/or Referee Administrator shall provide forms for game reporting prior to the match. Winning coaches and referees must sign this report, thereby verifying its authenticity. In the event of a tie in a preliminary game, both coaches must sign the report. Referees must return the game ball with the game card.
Other than registration qualification, the tournament committee will not authorize nor accept any protests. All decisions by the referee in charge are final.
J. Cautions and Ejections
a. Any player or coach committing a second cautionable offense during the course of a single game will receive a red card and be dismissed from the field of play.
b. Any player or coach receiving a red card will be required to sit out the next game.
c. Second and third red cards will be reviewed by the tournament committee.
a. A cautioned yellow card player may be substituted before restart of play; a red-carded player may not be substituted.
b. Cautions are recorded and the tournament committee will review any player receiving four (4) yellow cards during the competition for further disciplinary action.
c. Any coach playing a suspended player or a disqualified player will be reported to their local and state associations.
K. Game Time
Kickoff will be at the time shown on the schedule or immediately after the conclusion of the previous game, as determined by the referee. Team check-in requirements are outlined in Paragraphs P. and Q. below.
If any games are cancelled or shortened due to inclement weather after the tournament starts, there will be no refund of the entry fees. Tournament Committee reserves the right to end the Tournament, shorten games, or reschedule games in the event of inclement weather. Scores of preliminary games terminated after the start of the second half due to weather shall stand and will be used in consideration of team advancements. In the event the Tournament is terminated due to weather, winners will be determined under the point system listed herein. The Tournament Committee, Fort Smith Express, and its Board Members are not responsible for any expense or obligations incurred by any team if the Tournament is canceled in whole or in part.
M. Tournament Point System
Three (3) points awarded for a win, one (1) point for a tie, zero (0) for a loss.
N. Tie Breaking and Overtime Rules
In the event of teams being tied in the preliminary round standings, the following procedure shall be used to determine team seedings, including the advancing group winner. “Crossover games” (i.e., preliminary games with teams NOT in your group) will ONLY be considered in determination of the group winner when tiebreakers 1-5 fail to determine the group winner. Crossover games WILL be used when determining a wild card.
1. Head-to-head competition
2. Net goal differential. (up to three (3) goals per game)
(Example : Results of three preliminary round games:
5 – 0 win equals +3,
4 – 2 win equals +2,
1 – 3 loss equals –2. Total net equals +3)
3. Fewest goals allowed.
4. Most shutouts
5. Total goal differential.
6. Penalty cards. Both yellow and red cards (one red card equals two yellow cards).
7. Current FIFA penalty kick procedures.
If more than two teams are tied at the end of preliminary rounds for first place in the Group, or a wild card or seeding position, the tiebreaker procedures will be the same. However, as teams are eliminated, the tiebreaker process will continue in the order shown above and will NOT revert to a previous tiebreaker (i.e., if all but two teams are eliminated, the tiebreaker process will NOT return to head-to-head).
In the event of teams being tied in the preliminary round standings and there is no championship game (i.e., champion and runner up are to be determined by points) and the teams are still tied after the 5th tie breaker, then the teams will be declared either co-champs or co-runners up depending on the situation.
In the event of a tie at the end of regulation play in a quarter-final, semi-final or final game, the following procedure shall be used: Two (2) full and completed five minute overtime periods shall be played (i.e., NO golden goal). See Paragraph D for length of overtime periods per age group. If still tied, referee shall use current FIFA penalty kick procedures.
First and second place teams will receive a team plaque or trophy. First and second place team players will receive a medal, including U10 Academy as specified in Paragraph D. above. All other academy players will receive participatory medals.
P. Game Check-In
All teams must arrive in plenty of time (30 minutes suggested) to check in with the center referee. Players must be dressed in full uniform at check-in time. Failing to do this may result in a forfeit. Present player passes and/or roster to the referee. Players must wear numbers on backs of their shirts. Shin guards are required and must be worn by every player.
Q. Forfeited Games
A team will be allowed a 10-minute grace period from the scheduled kick-off time. If the team has still not arrived by the end of the grace period, the opponent can be eligible for a forfeit win; however, the forfeiture must be approved by the Tournament Director before a game is officially awarded to the opponent team. In the event forfeiture is granted, its opponent will be awarded a win with a score of 3-0 and given 3 points.
R. Sideline Conduct
All spectators and fans will sit on one side of the field. The coaches and their teams will sit on the opposite side of the field from the spectators and fans. The responsibility for the control of the sidelines rests with the team coach. Referees will be instructed to abandon any game due to excessive problems with sideline control. The tournament committee will review the situation and make all further decisions on the continuation of play for any team causing the referee to abandon a game.
THE TOURNAMENT COMMITTEE RESERVES THE RIGHT TO DECIDE ALL MATTERS PERTAINING TO THE TOURNAMENT.