INTRODUCTION THE LINE-UP Place the rod of the goalkeeper underneath the bottom of the goal net so that the goalkeeper can be manipulated from behind the goal. If there is a back bar on the goal the goalkeeper can be placed under or over it as desired, assuming that the net fixing allows this.
PROPULSION The playing figures are propelled in the following manner: (1) Place the first or second finger of the right or left hand immediately behind the figure, with the tip of the finger-nail just touching the pitch. Using the pitch surface slightly as a 'spring' gently flick the figure against the ball. (2) DO NOT use the thumb as a 'spring', the thumb does not enter into propulsion. GOALKEEPING The standard Goalkeeper is on a player rod so designed that the goalkeeper is limited in action to the goal area. Where it is desired that the goalkeeper takes a goal kick, free standing ‘spare’ goalkeepers are available for this purpose. This goalkeeper can be brought into play to take the kick and then be removed from play. Whilst the kick is being taken the goalkeeper on the rod is out of play and should be withdrawn into the back of the net, coming back into play after the kick is taken and the kicking goalkeeper removed.
ELEMENTARY PLAYING RULES The general rules of play are basically the same as those for Association Football, with some necessary additions to govern their application to Subbuteo Table Soccer. The elementary rules are a simplified version of the Advanced Rules, for the benefit of the beginner. A certain amount of duplication has been retained for easier reference and to avoid confusion.
THE KICK-OFF AND AFTER As in real football, a coin is tossed for ends and the losing team kicks off. The centre forward is gently propelled against the ball and the game is on. If the ball does not touch an opposing figure the team that has kicked-off is still in play. A nearby figure is again played at the ball, and so long as the player is hitting the ball with one of his own figures—and the ball does NOT touch an opposing figure — he remains in play. Immediately the player MISSES the ball with his figure, or if the ball touches an opposing figure, it is then his opponent's turn to play in the same way. The figure that touches the ball last represents the team that is in play, unless the figure flicks the ball out of play. Then the opposing side takes the goal kick, corner or throw-in for the resumption of play. Goalkeepers are neutral and do not alter the sequence of the possession of the ball. PLAYING TIME, EXTRA TIME, ETC. Twenty minutes each way is recommended for the duration of a game, particularly for competition play, but this can be altered by mutual consent between players. Half-time interval to be agreed, normally five minutes. In competition play if the score is level at the final whistle, extra time periods of five minutes each way should be played. If still level after extra time the following formula is recommended. Each side to be allowed FIVE shots at goal, as for penalties but taken from different positions ON the SHOOTING AREA LINE. (1) where the shooting area line joins the touchline on left of pitch (2) where the shooting area line joins the touchline on right side of pitch (3) opposite the penalty area line on the left (4) opposite the penalty area line on the right (5) opposite the regulation penalty spot, centre of shooting area line. In each case the ball should be placed in a shootable position (ie completely within the shooting area, just inside the shooting area line). The goal shots should be controlled by the referee, as with penalties, and all figures other than goalkeeper should be withdrawn from the shooting area. The goalkeeper is not confined to the goal-line. FLICKING The figures must be flicked cleanly as described, NOT knocked, scraped, or pushed. A free kick should be awarded against any breach of this rule. No one figure may flick the ball more than THREE times in succession. Following each third flick another figure of the same team must play the ball, and so on until possession is lost. GOAL SCORING Before a shot at goal can be made the ball must be completely within the SHOOTING AREA. GOAL KICKS Either an outfield playing figure or the spare Goalkeeper may be used to take goal kicks. As in real football these are taken from the side where the ball went out of play. THE THROW-IN Is normally taken from the touchline by flicking the ball in the normal manner from the point where it crossed the line, but the figure taking the kick must not follow over the line into the playing area. If it does, the opposing side is awarded a foul throw and re-takes it. FOULS A foul is awarded when a figure hits an opponent's figure WITHOUT first touching the ball and a free kick is given. When the offence takes place within the penalty area, a penalty is awarded against the offending team. PENALTY KICKS During a penalty kick the goalkeeper must be standing still on his own goal line. Figures of both sides that were within the penalty area must be withdrawn outside the area and behind the penalty kicker. INJURIES A figure is considered 'injured' if during play it is damaged, it may be taken off for repair and then resume play. If it suffers further injury it must be retired from the game. Allowance should be made for 'injury time' by the referee. POSITIONING OF FIGURES Figures may be placed in position for the taking of goal kicks and free kicks anywhere, except as follows: No more than three defending figures may be placed in the penalty area. Figures may NOT be positioned within the opposing SHOOTING AREA. For Corner Kicks both sides may flick three figures for positioning and marking, the attacking side flicking first. For Free Kicks TWO figures and for Throw-ins ONE figure of each side may be flicked into position. FREE KICKS AND FREE FLICKS When throw-ins, corner kicks, etc. are to be taken, players may use 'free flicks' to flick their figures into position to mark dangerously placed opposing figures, and/or set up their own for defensive or attacking movements. These are used for positional play and must not contact the ball. SPORTSMANSHIP
In all sports and games there must be honour between competitors, at all levels. The losing side has the right to declare the length of time that shall be taken for the replacing of the figures for a goal kick. When 'free flicks' take place the defending side should be the last to move a figure. Players should mutually agree as to procedure when in doubt over any matter relative to the game. If a third person is acting as referee his decision should be accepted as final without dispute. ADVANCED PLAYING RULES
The following complete rules are an extension of the Elementary Rules, and should be adopted by advanced players. GENERAL Positioning Tactical positioning (by placing for goal kicks) shall be governed by the rules that the figures shall be placed at least one inch (2.5 cm) apart. Rule 1 THE KICK OFF (a) The centre-forward kicks off forward over the half-way line, after which he may not touch the ball until it has been played by another figure of his side. (b) The side in possession shall be deemed the attacking side. No single figure may play the ball more than three times in succession, unless it rebounds off another figure of the same side. (c) A side may continue to play the ball until their figure misses the ball or it touches an opposing figure. (d) Each side must have at least three figures within 3.5 inches (9cm) of the half-way line and the defending side shall have no figures inside the centre circle. Rule 2 THE BALL OUT OF PLAY OR FIGURE LEAVING THE FIELD OF PLAY When the ball passes completely over the touch-line a 'throw-in' must be taken from the spot where the ball left the field. The ball is flicked into play. The figure may only flick once and must not travel over the touchline, otherwise it is a 'foul throw' and will be penalised. The throw-in is made by a figure opposite to that side which touched the ball last before it travelled over the line. 'Forcing' a throw in off an opponent can only be made subject to the following conditions:— (a) The ball and players concerned must be in the same quarter of the field and the ball must leave the field within the limits of that quarter. (b) A shot at goal is made and the ball rebounds off the goalkeeper (or handle) and goes into touch. (c) Figures outside the touch-line, but not off the baize cloth, may be forced off (as long as the ball hits the figure before it goes out of play). (d) After a figure has taken a throw in, it shall be placed exactly on the touch-line and within an inch of where the throw in was taken. (e) A player may (after being flicked) leave the field of play (i.e. cross the line) and return again on to the pitch proper (i.e. a swerve) without penalty provided it does not leave the green baize or touch the fence surround. If the latter occurs, it should be placed on the touch-line at the spot it first crossed the line. (f) A figure flicked successfully at the ball but then travelling over the touch-line may be placed on the touch-line at the point of departure and then be used to flick immediately. (g) A figure travelling into goal. (1) If an attacker, the figure shall be placed just outside either goal-post on the goal line. (2) If a defender, the figure shall be placed anywhere within the goalkeeper's box. In the real game, under normal circumstances, it would be almost impossible for a full-back clearing from his own penalty area to kick the ball on to an opponent and gain a corner at the other end of the field. It would, however, be reasonably simple to do so in Subbuteo Table Soccer. It is, therefore, the rule that before gaining a corner, goal-kick or throw in off an opponent the ball must be forced off an opponent within the limits of the quarter it was originally in. In the case of a throw in both figures must be in the quarter to start with; with corners the figure forced off and the ball must be in the same quarter, the forcing figure in the same half. Rule 3 GOAL SCORING (a) Before a shot may be taken at goal, the ball must be (entirely) in the Shooting Area, but the figure making the shot need only be in its opponent's half. No shot taken with the ball outside the area can score, no matter what figures the ball touches en route to the goal. No corners, or alternatively goal-kicks, can be attained in this manner. Similarly, if a ball does go into the net in this fashion a goal-kick is awarded. (Rules 3(f) and 5(e) are exceptions to this rule). (b) The ball must be entirely over the goal-line to score. (c) The figure MUST be flicked in the correct manner, not pushed, scraped or knocked. (d) As in real football, the ball may be hit whilst rolling. (e) Attacking players do not have to wait for a goalkeeper to be ready. Likewise, they do not have to wait for the defender's blocking flicks. (f) The ball passed back into one's own goal from any part of the field—is a goal, or, if travelling over the dead ball line, a corner. (g) The goalkeeper that drags a stationary ball into his own goal concedes a goal. Rule 4 OFFSIDE (a) At least one defender, other than the goalkeeper, must be in the defending area before 'offside' can be claimed. (b) Any attacking figure nearer to the dead ball line than the defence, other than the goalkeeper (or other figure), is in an offside position. (c) If the ball is flicked past the last defending figure, whether or not it is passed directly to the attacking figure, that figure is offside. (d) A figure in an offside position may be flicked onside at any time by a player asking permission providing the player asking is in possession of the ball. A figure flicked onside should not touch an opposing figure and may not be used until another of that side has been flicked and when flicked should be aimed to travel generally speaking parallel with the touchline and not more than six inches 'onside'. Non-compliant onside flicks should be ordered to be re-taken by the referee. (e) A figure in an offside position (as 4(b)) is not actually offside until the ball in passed through, but if from this position he attempts (is flicked) to play the ball he is immediately penalised. (f) When a 'goal' is scored by a figure from an offside position, and a goal is signalled by the referee before noticing that the figure was offside, unless the situation is apparent at this time enabling the referee to give a sound decision—the decision of a goal should stand. If the game is competitive and has a linesman, the referee may consult him but the referee's decision is final whatever the outcome of this consultation. Any claim to a figure being offside by the defence must be made immediately after the ball enters the net, and before the field has been re-arranged for the kick-off. (g) If, through the play of his opponents, a figure in an 'offside position' is 'left with the ball', this has the effect of playing him onside and he may continue in the normal manner. (h) If a ball is passed through to a player in an offside position and touches an opponent before ultimately touching him, he is 'played on' and may continue. (i) For each 'onside flick' taken by the attack, the defence may have an extra blocking flick for marking purposes. (j) No figure outside the shooting area can be adjudged offside. (k) No figure can be offside from the taking of a goal-kick, corner-kick or throw-in. Rule 5 FOUL PLAY (a) It is a foul if the attacking figure hits the defending figure before touching the ball. A free kick or penalty is awarded accordingly. The player to whom the award is made can accept the free kick or indicate 'play on', whichever is to his advantage. A goalkeeper is a special case, see Rule 10(i). (b) A figure hitting a goal upright, corner flag or surround and rebounding on to the field and hitting an opposing player does not commit a foul, play continues. (c) A figure over the touch-line but not off the baize can be fouled. (d) A player laying down CANNOT be fouled and if the ball touches such a player he should be penalised for HANDBALL. Within the penalty area — a penalty. With regard to handball, a referee should give a player reasonable time to stand a player upright. (e) If the player's hand prevents the ball going into the net through negligence or accident, a penalty should be given. If in the opinion of the referee it is done deliberately, a goal should be awarded. Should a player pick up the ball whilst play is continuing, a free kick should be awarded — if in the penalty area — a penalty. If the ball hits a player's hand accidentally when he is in possession — possession goes to the other side or a corner, throw in etc. is given away. (f) If a defending player obstructs his opponent round the table, a direct free kick should be given from the position of the ball at the time. (Two warnings should precede action). (g) If the goalkeeper touches the ball outside his 'box' whilst on the handle whether in possession or not it is a penalty. (One warning should be given). (h) A player shall not put both hands on the table at the same time, in a manner that may interfere with play, though he may hold the goalkeeper whilst flicking. Indirect free kick. (One warning). (i) A figure being flicked four times in succession. Indirect free kick. (j) Offside — indirect free kick. (k) Handball (as 5 (d)). (I) When a direct free kick is taken inside the shooting area, the defending side may place up to four figures (by hand) as a "barrier" in defence. Subject to Rule 7(d) (3.5" clearance). Rule 6 DEFENCE The side not in possession (the defence) may have alternate flicks to the attack's positive flicks for defence purposes, but when taking these flicks they must not touch the ball or any of the attacking figures, should they do so, the attack may appeal "Back" and have figure and ball restored to their former positions. On resuming, the defence forego the block flick that was replaced in penalty. Should a mix up occur, which in the referee's opinion is blameless to either side, he can restore both figures and ball to their former positions and then order a restart to play from that point. Rule 7 GENERAL RULES FOR SET PIECES (Corner kick, free kick, penalty kick and throw in) (a) The figure taking the award shall be picked up first and placed where kick or throw in is to be taken. The attacking side then take their flicks for positioning—three for a corner, two for a free kick and one for a throw in, the defence then do likewise to mark up etc. (b) A figure taking any of the above awards may not play the ball immediately afterwards until another figure has been flicked at the ball. (c) Offside in relation to the above awards. See rule 4 (k). (d) No figure may approach within 3.5" (9cm) on these occasions. (e) A goal can be scored direct from a corner. A shot deflected from the goalkeeper or it’s rod into the net is a goal. (f) Direct free kicks must not be taken until signalled by the referee. (g) Forcing of the above off opponents. (See rule 2.) (h) Clarification—Movement of players on these occasions. Goal-kick by picking up the figures and placing. Three FLICKS for a corner, two FLICKS for a free kick and one FLICK for a throw-in. Rule 8 INTERCEPTION (a) The last figure to intercept (touch) the ball is ruled to be in possession (excepting goalkeepers). (b) Goalkeepers are neutral with regard to possession of the ball for their side. If a goalkeeper saves a shot and pushes the ball out into the field of play, possession goes to the side whose figure is nearest to the ball when it stops rolling. If the ball actually touches a figure during this, then of course possession goes to that side. Should there be any doubt in the mind of the referee which side is nearest advantage goes to the defence. (c) If a shot is saved by the goalkeeper and then is hit again by an attacker BEFORE it stops rolling, it is in order and if a goal is scored — it stands. (d) Where two figures contact the ball at the same time, the last side to play the ball assumes possession and it is their flick, but when played, unless they can hit the ball to touch one of their own side, possession goes to their opponents. (e) If a figure is flicked at the ball, does not connect, but causes another of the same side to connect with it (providing no other infringements occur), contact has successfully been made. (f) Any figure moved extraneously (such as a figure rebounding off the fence or being moved aside legally) to allow another figure to be played, should be replaced to its correct position, and the opposing side may demand this if they consider the matter vital. Rule 9 INJURIES Should a figure suffer damage or fall apart during a game, it may be taken off and repaired. The referee should note any 'injury time' and allow accordingly. If the same figure is 'injured' again, it must be withdrawn from the game. Substitution for injured or ineffective players should be agreed by the players BEFORE the match and in accordance with current F.A. rules on substitutes. Goalkeepers are not subject to this rule and may be replaced at any time. (This rule may be altered in Official Tournaments & figures replaced when broken). Rule 10 PENALTIES AND GOALKEEPERS (a) When a penalty is taken a goalkeeper is to be on his goal-line touching the cloth and stationary until the ball is actually played. (If this rule is infringed three times a goal should be awarded.) (b) When a penalty is awarded, a player shall keep his hands off the table until the referee gives the order "Play on!" The penalty is then taken. (c) When a figure is flicked at the ball when taking a penalty, providing the defending side has not infringed, the shot is ruled as taken—even if the ball is missed. (d) A goalkeeper must always be ready during play. No hindrance to a shooting figure is allowed. If the player tries to adjust his goalkeeper and the ball hits his hand—a penalty is awarded. (e) A goalkeeper on the handle must not touch the ball out-side their own 'box' in any circumstances (see 5(e)). (f) The goalkeeper may be taken off the playing handle, or be substituted with a 'Spare Goalkeeper' without handle for taking goal kicks or advancing outside his area to clear the ball up field. He may only be used in this capacity when the ball is in his side's possession. Once on the field of play he becomes an ordinary figure and prone to the same rules. If, during an attempt to clear in this fashion, he misses (or loses possession of) the ball, he cannot be re-instated into goal until the opposing side has had up to three flicks (assuming they keep possession in the normal way). During this time, of course, the attack may shoot into an empty net. They must, however, on completion of the three flicks, wait for the goalkeeper to be re-instated in goal before proceeding further. (g) A spare goalkeeper on the field of play and out of possession of the ball may be used for defensive flicks in the normal way. Whatever capacity a spare goalkeeper is on the field of play, as soon as he has completed his task, he should be withdrawn and the goalkeeper proper put back in goal. (h) When a spare goalkeeper is on the field, the proper one should be taken out or pushed well back into the back of the goal. If a spare goalkeeper is on the field and a shot is saved by the goalkeeper on the rod — a goal should be awarded. (i) A referee will not normally give a foul when a goalkeeper is "fouled" but the defence may appeal on such occasions and if the referee feels the defence are being vitally threatened or penalised in such a situation he may award a free kick or, alternatively, wave play on. (j) The goalkeeper must not be waved rapidly 'to and fro', neither may he be pushed or knocked outside his box—'Billiards style'—with the handle. (k) The goalkeeper and his handle are as one. The handle can deflect a shot into the net or save it, as part of the goalkeeper, or give away a corner etc. Rule 11 THE GOAL-KICK A goal-kick is given in circumstances similar to that under F.A. rules subject to:— (a) A goal-kick may only be forced when both figures and ball are in the defensive area and the ball goes over the dead ball line inside that area. It may be forced off a figure that is off the field (as Rule 2(d)). (b) The player taking the goal-kick may pick up his figures and place them wherever he wishes, except in the opposing area and in his own goalkeeper's box. Three figures must be placed within 3.5" (9cm) of the half-way line if a side is concentrated in their own half. (c) When taken, the ball must pass outside the defending penalty area and not touch any figure inside the penalty area whilst doing so, or the goal-kick must be re-taken. (d) Should a defence be unusually slow in 'marking up', the referee may give permission for the kick to be taken forthwith. Conversely, the referee may also hold up briefly the taking of a kick to enable the defence to re-arrange. (e) Spacing of players should be at least 1" apart for placing or marking with the exception of a direct free-kick within the shooting area, whereby the defence may form a defensive 'wall' of not more than four players, which may be closer than 1” but not touching. Rule 12 CORNER KICK A corner kick is given in circumstances similar to F.A. rules subject to: — (a) A corner kick cannot be forced unless the ball and defending figure are both inside the defending area. The attacker figure concerned must be in his opponent's half. The defending figure may be off the field of play (see Rule 2(d)). Note: Similarly, a figure in its own defending area forcing a goal kick off an opponent must be in that area when achieving this (as also must be his opponent and the ball). (b) A goal may be scored direct from a corner. (c) The moving ball may be flicked twice (including the taking of the corner) before the offside rule becomes operational (see Rule 4 (k)). Rule 13 REFEREES (a) In all competitive games a referee should be in control. In Friendlies it is desirable. (b) If possible, a referee should appoint a linesman. The linesman may indicate a point but shall not voice an opinion until asked to do so by the referee. (c) The referee shall enforce the laws but should refrain from penalising where he believes the infringing side may gain advantage. (d) Competitors have the right to appeal for or against a decision but not to haggle. (e) Time Wasting — If the referee is of the opinion that a competitor is wasting time deliberately, however this is accomplished, even within the normal laws of the game, he should award an indirect kick to the opposing side. THE REFEREE'S DECISION IS ALWAYS FINAL. EQUIPMENT GUIDLINES PLAYING FIGURES The general intention is that the figures used to play to these rules should be of a style that is pre-1994 – ie that they should not be played to with modern ‘flat-based’ figures like the Subbuteo/Hasbro Monoblock figures or later flat-based figures. In saying this post-1994 ‘retro’ figures made in the style of pre-1994 figures should be accepted – eg Santiago (but not ‘Spitfire’), Top Spin, La Leggenda, Zeugo HWs (but not Flat Base), Pendle Falcon, Nuovo Falco, Replay or similar. This also means that pre-1994 non-Subbuteo figures should be allowed, eg Newfooty, Swiss (SSTV) flats, ETSA flats etc. It is acceptable to mix a flat keeper with an OO team or vice-versa. In case of any doubt the tournament director will make a judgement on what is allowed or preferably state any specific requirements in the tournament advertising