2018 Rule Changes

Press release! 

As players, turned managers, and occasional referees, Becs and Julie understand the rules of SUB Football from all angles. This year we are making several changes to the rules - if you're a seasoned SUB Footballer, this press release is for you!

SUB Football was created to encourage people of all skill levels to play, encourage good sportsmanship, and ensure player safety. Since it's inception in 1998, several rules have been trialled and changed, but there's a few that are definitely here to stay, as they are what make SUB Football unique. 

The changes we have made are in response to our experience, player feedback, and to make some inconsequential rules more in line with association football to avoid confusion to players. These rules changes have been made to provide a smoother balance between enjoyment, fair play, and keeping the game competitive.  

Rules that stay - these are what make SUB Football unique!

  • No force policy 
  • Kick or throw in from the sideline
  • Score from anywhere
  • Corner kicks may be taken on the line anywhere between the corner and the edge of the Penalty D
  • 3 points for a goal, 1 point for a board
  • Goal keeper only area
  • Unlimited rolling subs
  • No off-sides

Rules that have changed

The penalty D

  • Any foul commited within the penalty D may result in a 3 point penalty goal if the referee believes it has denied the attacking team a goal scoring opportunity. 
  • Any other foul committed in the D by a defending player will result in a free kick taken from outside the penalty D.


  • As with association football, goalkeepers may now receive a ball into their hands if headed back to them from a player on their own team. Goalkeepers may not handle any other deliberate pass-backs.
  • The goalkeeper is no longer restricted to play within the penalty D.
  • They may still only handle the ball within the 12x3m goalkeepers area in front of the goal.
  • The goalkeeper may now dribble the ball into their own area.


  • Although we expect all teams to wear uniform shirts, a penalty point system will no longer be applied.

There have been several other suggestions for rule changes over the years. Unfortunately we cannot please everyone, and we feel these changes are a happy medium. We hope that you'll agree. Good luck for the season teams! We look forward to seeing you out there.

Becs and Julie.