AUGUST 10-16, 2019, CHINA, Qingdao

Official Regulation

§ 1. Rules

Gothia Cup China will be played in accordance with applicable sections of the FIFA rules and the Chinese F.A. rules. In questions of interpretations of FIFA rules, the English text applies.

§ 2. Rules of the game

2.1  Gothia Cup China is an open tournament and welcomes all football teams.

2.2 The teams are divided into groups of four or five where all the teams will meet in a round robin serie. The order among the teams will be decided according to points.3 points will be awarded for a win,1 point for a draw and 0 points for a loss.

If two or more teams have the same number of points, the order will be decided as follows:

  1. Results in matches between teams with equal points
  2. Goal difference. highest number of goals scored
  3. Highest number of goals scored
  4. draw lots to decide

2.3 Play off

The two best teams in each group will advance to Play off A. The other teams in the group will advance to the Play off B. All play off games will be decided by the cup system, i.e. by direct elimination. A draw in the play off will be decided by penalty kicks according to FIFA rules.

For 11 aside/8aside, penalty kick is 5 plus 1 rounds, for 5 aside ,penalty is 3 plus 1 rounds.

For 11 aside, Only the players in the fields when the match is finished could do the penalty kick.  for 8 aside and 5 aside, players on the team list for the match could do the penalty kick.

§ 3. Age Categories 2019

B25 – Boys born 1/1-94 and later
B18 – Boys born 1/1-01 and later
B16 – Boys born 1/1-03 and later
B15 – Boys born 1/1-04 and later
B14 – Boys born 1/1-05 and later
B13 – Boys born 1/1-06 and later
B12 – Boys born 1/1-07 and later
(Boys 12 – 8-a-side)
B11 – Boys born 1/1-08 and later
(Boys 11- 8-a-side)
B10 – Boys born 1/1-09 and later
(Boys 10- 8-a-side)
B9 – Boys born 1/1-10 and later
(Boys 9- 5-a-side)


G16 – Girls born 1/1-03 and later
G14 – Girls born 1/1-04 and later
G12 – Girls born 1/1-06 and later

G10 – Girls born 1/1-09 and later
(G12 & G10  8-a-side)

§ 4. Playing period

5 mins Break for half time


 All games: 2×35 min.

B11 B12 Elite

All games: 2×30 min.

B18, B16, B15
Group Stage: 2×30 min. 
Play off B: 2×30 min. 
Play off A: 2×30 min.

B14, B13, B12, B11,B10, B9,G16,G14, G12
Group Stage: 2×25 min. 
Play off B: 2×25 min. 
Play off A: 2×30 min.

§ 5. Number of players/Coaches

5.1For 11-a-side,8 aside, and 5 aside , the limit on the number of players and coaches registered for a team is Max 25,18,12 accordingly.

5.2For 11-a-side, no team may use more than 18 players in a match, 11 players on the field and 7 substitutes. A substituted player may reenter in the match. Substitutions can be done without stopping the game, but need the consent from the referee or the official. Notice that the game has to be stopped and the referee has to be informed at the substitution of a goalkeeper. All substitutions should be done within the technical area of the team. If there is no technical area the substitution should be made at the centre line. The player that will be substituted has to leave the field before the new player can enter the field. Incorrect substitutions will be punished with a yellow card.

5.3 It is permitted to use a player from the same club in 2 teams but not in the same age class, 1 player can’t play for 2 different clubs  or more than 2 teams. This player has to be on the participant list of all teams he/she will play for. The player also has to be present when doing the age  control of the teams the player plays for. There is no maximum number of players on the participant list.

5.4 In classes B12, B11,B10 ,B9 and G12 ,G10,No team may use more than 13 players in a 8-side match. 8 players in the field and 5 substitutes. A substituted player may reenter in the match. 

§ 6. Proof of age/participant list

6.1 Each team must submit a list of all the players to with Passport Photo to the Gothia Cup China before 1st, July, 2019. All players MUST be able to identify themselves and to certify their age with a valid passport or ID card.  NOTE! Copy of passport or identity document is not valid. the Ref/official will do age control of each player before each match.

6.2 All players MUST be able to identify themselves and to certify their age with a valid, oringnal  passport or ID card.  NOTE! Copy of passport or identity document is not valid.

6.3 The teams lodged in dormitory or hotel booked through the Gothia Cup China, will be controlled at the dormitory or hotel. local teams will do the age control at Gothia Cup China’s office.

6.4 At this time each player on the list must be present and show proof of identity and age. And each player must be in the list of the players.This must be done before the team’s first game. Single player can join at a later time, provided that they are listed on the first given participant list and that the player shows valid identification, before he/she plays his/her first game. Teams using non -eligible players can be excluded from the tournament.

6.5 Note that age cheating, fake ID, using non-eligible player will lead to disqualifying of the team and ban from participating in Gothia Cup China for 2 years.

6.6 Note that the responsible team leader (written on the list of participants) must attend all the players’ age verification. Team could file a protest after the match to Gothia Cup China if the team suspects their the opponent using non-eligible players , and summit the the evidence like photos/video of the players in  the match, Gothia Cup China will handle it according to the rules  

6.7 that the responsible team leader (written on the list of participants) must attend all the players’ age verification.Injured player may be replaced on the list of participants if there is a medical certificate and the number of players on the list of participants is less than 14 (10 in 8-a-side) after the injured player has been excluded.

Gothia Cup China official/Referee will do the age control and check on the eligibility of each player in the team list  before every match.

§ 7. Dispensations

7.1 In the 11-a-side categories, dispensations will automatically be given to two players per squad who are maximum one year over aged. Note that you can not use more over aged players by switching them between matches.

For 8-a- side, dispensations will automatically be given to one player per squad who are maximum one year over aged (except Elite Boy 11,12 ).Note that you can not use more over aged players by switching them between matches.

For Elite Boy 11,12 and 5-a-side , There is no dispensation.

7.2 In classes B16 teams from countries that still use the 1st of August rule ( USA and England) may also use players 5 months over aged.

7.3 Girls may play in boy classes as long as the regulations for age categories are followed.

§ 8. Match information

8.1 Team list

  • A written team list (This list can be filled and downloaded/printed from My Team Info) must be handed to the referee before every match.
  • The number each player has on the team list must be the same as the number of the shirt.
  • All players on the team list are considered as if they have participated in the game.
  • Random controls of team lists and participant lists will be carried out.
  • All team leaders  have to be indicated with their names on the Team list. Only these leaders can be allowed on the technical area.

8.2  Players’ uniforms & shoes

  • All team shirts must be numbered and the numbers must correspond to the numbers on the team list. Numbers must be on the backs of the shirts. Two players may not use the same number in any given match.
  • If the referee decides that one team should change shirts due to similarity to the opposing team’s shirts, the team appearing last in the match schedule must change.
  • Football shoes with plastic Studs are OK. Football shoes with metal studs are not allowed.

8.3 Before, during and after the game

  • All teams should be ready at the field no later than 15 minutes before kick-off.
  • The team manager must make sure that his players are adequately insured.
  • All players must wear shinguards.
  • The teams are responsible for their supporters’ conduct. Bad supporters’ behavior/conduct can result in team’s exclusion from the tournament.
  • Every responsible team official (coach) must immediately after the match sign the referee’s match card in order to confirm match results, red cards and other events during the game. Failure to sign may result in a notification to the Gothia Cup china competition jury.

8.4 Balls

All matches are played using balls of size 5, except for classes B9,B10,B11, B12, G12,  G10, which using Ball of size 4.

§ 9. 8-a-side/5-a-side

Classes B10,B11, B12 and G12,G10 play 8-a-side (one goalkeeper and 6 players). The offside rule is not applicable. It is allowed to pass the ball to the goalkeeper and he/she is allowed to pick up the ball with the hands. Goal kick can be done from the ground or from the hands of the goalkeeper. He/she can also throw the ball. Sending-off at obvious goal-scoring opportunity is not valid.

Special Rules for 5-a-side 

 FIFA 5-a-side rules Applies.


Goal keepers can’t keep the ball for more than 4 seconds

Score by Kick- off  is a foul

6 fouls accumulated to a penalty  in a half time 

Goal keeper must do the goal kick by throwing the ball with hands  and the ball must be out of the goal area.


§ 10. Referees

The referees are authorized by the  Football Association.

The coordinator of the referees during the tournament will be available at the Olympic Center. If you have comments  about the referees you are more than welcome to leave your feedback.

§ 11. Tournament jury

The jury handles protests and sanction matters. Their decisions can not be appealed.

§ 12. Protest and sanctions

12.1 Any and all protests must be made in writing by the team manager. Protests must be delivered at the Gothia Cup China  no later than 90 minutes after the match is finished.

  • A protest fee of 1200 CNY will be paid at that time. This fee will be returned if the protest is approved.
  • The decisions of the referee regarding facts connected with the play are final. (FIFA rule no. 5). No measures will be taken on protests on decisions made by referees.

12.2 Cautions and sending-off offense

  • Any player given a red card is automatically suspended from participation in the following match. 
  • The tournament jury can decide about suspension for further game(s) in case of a direct red card.
  •  yellow cards are not accumulated the player will be suspended from the next match if he/she get 2 yellow card in a match which will turn into 1 red card . The yellow cards will be reset after the group stage.

IMPORTANT NOTE: If a player that is suspended participates in a game, the team with the suspended player automatically loses the game with 0-3.

§ 13. Walk over, abandoned match

13.1 Any team not appearing at the appointed time and place for a match can be declared looser by 0-3. If a team repeatedly fail to appear at the games, the team may be excluded from the tournament. In special cases, the tournament jury may decide to exclude a team at the first offense, i.e. if a deliberate WO favors the own team or is unfair to another team in the group.

13.2 If a match is interrupted for some reason and can’t be played to the end the jury will decide if the game has to be replayed, or restarted from the minute when it was interrupted, or if the result will be fixed or if one of the teams or both teams lose 0-3.

§ 14. Match fields

14.1  The playing fields are  artificial turf. 

14.2 In case of bad weather conditions games may be reschedules,  or decided by penalty kicks or drawing of lots.

§ 15. Match Schedule

15.1 The organization committee has the right to change the groups , times and fields and should communicate with the teams beforehand.

15.2 In case of bad weather conditions in which match can’t be played or continue , the match should be stopped. if in 30 minutes, the conditions is still not suitable for playing, the referees will call off the match. Gothia Cup China will try to schedule the re-match.  if a re-match is not possible, Gothia Cup China have the right to decide to do penalty kicks or drawing of lots .

§ 16. Regulations for accommodation

16.1 General

  • The team manager as indicated on the participant list is responsible for any damage caused by his/her players.
  • Consumption of alcoholic beverages is absolutely forbidden in the schools.
  • Silence is prescribed in each dormitory between 11 p.m. – 6 a.m.
  • Before departure you have to clean your sleeping room.

16.2 To prevent fire

  • Smoking is prohibited in the schools.
  • It is forbidden to cook (for instance to make coffee) in the sleeping facilities and corridors.
  • It is forbidden to put combustibles in the corridors, or to move out desks and chairs etc.
  • Please note that the doors between the corridors and the stairs must be closed.


§ 17. Insurance and responsibility

Make sure that all your players are insured both on and off the playing field. The Gothia Cup China does not carry any group insurance protecting participants in case of injury, illness, theft or damage to property. The Gothia Cup China is in no way responsible for injury or economic loss which may arise in the case of war, warlike events, civil war, revolution or civil disturbances or because of the actions of the authorities, strikes, lockouts, blockades or similar events. Participants from countries that have no medical insurance agreement with China must have personal medical insurance.