Some of the goals of small-sided, 4 v 4 youth soccer games are:
- Increase player participation, referred to many times as “getting more touches on the ball,” which translates into greater player enjoyment of the game.
- Introduce players to the concept of working together in a collaborative manner.
- Develop player’s spatial and directional awareness, without restricting players to specific positions on the field.
- Familiarize players with the most basic laws-of-the-game (LOTG), such as the ball may not be picked-up and/or carried and what the appropriate re-starts are.
For referees, we are more “facilitators” of the goals above, than arbiters of the LOTG; teaching as we ensure the players are safe and enjoying themselves.
For more of my thoughts on: The role of the referee in the 4v4 game; Comparison to other games; and What is unwelcomed and/or not important in the 4v4 game go to: FUNdamentalsoccer.com
David Bragg, National Referee Emeritus (2010 – Present); National Referee 1997-2009;
MLS AR 1996-2009; Indoor Referee; Futsal Referee; State Assessor; State Instructor