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Soccer Parents KICK, May 2004 -- Soccer Goal Plans!
May 05, 2004

Here's the latest and greatest for soccer parents at large.


Table of Contents

1. Editor’s Corner Kick
2. The Laws of The Game – Law 1
3. Soccer Game: 3 v 1 Passing
4. A New Soccer Goal Plan

1. Editor’s Corner Kick

Well, Spring soccer is over here. Even local high school soccer is over as far as I’m concerned as a referee. Baseball is now in full swing – literally!

How about you? Drop me a line and tell me when your soccer season starts and stops. It would help me immensely in targeting the newsletter content throughout the year. THANKS!

On another note, MLS is back! And even better is that ESPN2 will be televising a game every Saturday throughout the season. You can find a schedule here. Get your child involved in watching MLS, a great way to learn more about soccer.

To find more soccer on tv, try my Soccer on TV page.

Final note - I still have a survey running on people’s favorite national team. Vote for your favorite team now!

2. The Laws of The Game – Law 1

Law 1 is titled “The Field of Play”.

I’m only going to discuss one part of this law today - Goals.

First, the mostly obvious

  • Goals must be placed on the center of each goal line (equidistant from the sides).
  • A goal consists of two upright posts joined at the top by a horizontal crossbar.
  • A goal is 24 ft between the posts and the bottom of the crossbar is 8 ft from the ground

Now the not so obvious

  • The posts and crossbar should have the same width.
  • The goal line should have the same width as the posts.
  • The posts and crossbar must be white.
  • Nets are not required.

Actually it states in the Laws that a net can be attached but it cannot interfere with the goalkeeper and must be properly supported.

It is also a requirement to have goals anchored securely to the ground for safety. I have heard of people getting hurt from goals tipping over, although I personally have no first hand experience. The rec. goals we use are too heavy to even move without several men.

One final comment. These goal dimensions are generally used above U-12. For younger kids the goals are scaled down appropriately.

What is appropriate? The rule of thumb given by Coach Karl Dewazien is to have the crossbar two feet above the height of the kids and an equal width in yards as the height is in feet.

Did I confuse you? Listen to the expert explain it. Coach Karl’s discussion on goal size is part of the free audio download sample you can find here.

For a more complete discussion of soccer rules (the FIFA version) visit the Soccer Rule Page.

If you really want to learn the rules yourself you should try the two-hour audio download of youth soccer expert Karl Dewazien explaining the Laws of The Game. Check out my review and you will see why I can recommend this without qualification!

3. Soccer Game: 3 v 1 Passing

Here is another good game for working on passing and receiving, space (the final frontier), and the evil passing shadow. It is identical to the 5 v 1 game from the last newsletter but the smaller numbers make it more difficult and require a bit more movement. A good progression during practice would be to introduce the passing shadow in the 5 v 1 game and then progress up to the 3 v 1 game.

Three Against One in a Square

This game can be found on Page 50 of Organizing Your Youth Soccer Team.

Equipment: 1 ball, 4 cones
Area Size: 10 x 10 meters


Three players move around the outside boundaries of the square and one player chases them. The three players should pass among themselves so that the one in the middle can’t reach the ball.

Let one player chase for one minute. Count how many times he or she breaks up the play or touches the ball during this time. Then let the others try to improve on that performance.

Vary the setup by changing the player in the middle as soon as he or she breaks up a play and gets control or forces one player to make a bad pass.


Stress the importance of the two passing receivers moving out of the shadow to offer passing alternatives on both sides of the opposing player. To simplify this exercise, in the beginning you can instruct the player in the middle to walk, not run.

Soccer game courtesy of
Organizing Your Youth Soccer Team
Online Soccer Drill and Coaching Ebook

Help for Parents – Learn Soccer the Easy Way
Are you still struggling to learn the game?

Still don’t understand the basic rules?

Are you guessing about the proper techniques for passing and shooting a soccer ball?

Don’t know how to teach the kids to play in different areas of the field?

I have a godsend for you - The Clueless Parents 3-Pack. It will cover all of these basics and much, much more. Do yourself a favor and CHECK IT OUT!


4. A New Soccer Goal Plan

I recently received this email message:

I have pipe, and am wishing to build some moveable goals (not sunk in cement).

I replied with an idea I’ve been contemplating for steel pipe. ( on hindsight maybe he was talking about PVC pipe. Oh well) This plan hasn’t been field tested so I would love to know how it works and any improvement ideas, pictures, etc. Actually it might work with PVC if you can find the schedule 10 pipe. I think, however, that it would probably not hold up with this design. Anyway, here it is.


This material list is more or less for a 6’ x 12’ goal. I haven’t made allowances for the elbows and unions so you may want to take off 1-2 inches from the 6’ sections or even better measure the fittings to get exact. For a larger goal just add length to the 1 ½” pipe sections.

  • 2 pieces 18” long, 1 ¼” pipe of any schedule
  • 4 pieces approx 6’ long, 1 ½” schedule 10 pipe
  • 2 pieces 1 ½” sch.10 elbows
  • 1 piece 1 ½” sch. 10 union
  • 2 pieces set screws
  • 1 soccer net, if needed


  1. Unless you have a metal shop I would recommend you buy the pipe from a local hardware store and have them cut & thread the 4 pieces of 1 ½” pipe. Two of the pieces should be threaded on both ends. The other two for the goal posts only need threads on one end.
  2. Lay out the pieces on the ground as they will fit together. Starting at the bottom left goal post (viewing from the front) you should lay out 1 – 6’ piece threads up, elbow, 1 – 6’ piece , union, 1 – 6’ piece, elbow, 1 – 6’ piece threads up. If you don’t want the ability to take the goal apart in two pieces, replace the 2 - 6’ crossbar pieces and union with one 12’ piece.
  3. Assemble the two halves by threading the goal posts into their respective elbows and the crossbar halves into the elbows.
  4. Install the union in the middle of the crossbar and join the two halves.
  5. To locate the goal post anchors, lay the goal on the ground in the location you want and mark the spots below the end of the two goal posts.
  6. With a slight forward angle, drive the 1 ¼” pipe into the ground about halfway.
  7. Take the assembled goal apart at the union.
  8. Slide one side of the goal onto the 1 ¼” pipe. The smaller pipe has an outer diameter of 1.66 inches and the larger pipe, if schedule 10, has an inner diameter of 1.68”. It should be a pretty good fit. Repeat with the other goal post.
  9. To anchor the posts better you may want to use either a bolt through the anchor legs or use a "set screw" where you drill a small hole through the 1 1/2" pipe only and use a properly sized self-tapping metal screw to go through the hole and tighten it down onto the 1 1/4 pipe. Might want to browse some at a hardware store for the best screw and then drill the hole to match. It would be good to find a screw with a large handle that could be tightened without tools.
  10. If you have a net, slide the net onto one side of the goal before joining the crossbars together at the union.

I hope it works well. Remember, be safe.

You will probably want to size your goal to fit an available soccer net size, although you can buy your own material if you want. A great website that I just found with many different net sizes and excellent prices can be found here.

Until next time.


Pass It On - Feel free to KICK the newsletter downfield to any friends, parents, or coaches who could use the information.
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