How Many Players are Allowed Per Team?

Every soccer team consists of a maximum eleven players (substitutes not included) and one of these players must be the goalkeeper.

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Your team goalkeeper is the only player allowed to play the ball with hands or arms, within your penalty area. Therefore, the goalkeeper cannot play with hands or arms in the opposing penalty area.


In an adult game a soccer team is usually allowed to have a maximum of three substitutes, but this may vary depending on the soccer rules of your local association.

If your coach is not satisfied with your performance on the soccer field, you may be replaced by some other player on the bench (substitute) during the course of the game.

The maximum allowed amount of substitutions is in most competitive international and domestic league three but this number may vary.

Usually the reasons for a substitution include injury, tiredness, ineffective, tactical switch or time wasting at the end of a finely poised soccer game.

In standard adult matches the substituted player may not take further part in a match, but note that this depends on which league you are playing in.

In amateur soccer league there are no limitations for how many times a player may leave and enter a soccer match as a substitute.

Who is The Boss?

A soccer game is officiated by a main referee who has full authority to make decision about everything on the soccer field.

Usually, the main referee is assisted by two assistant referees. In professional soccer leagues there are often a fourth referee who assists the main referee with substitutes.

Keep in mind also that referees may penalize you with a yellow card if the substitute is not made properly.

For example if your team is allowed to make how many substitutes they wish, and if you are substitute for the moment, you must wait for your teammate to leave the field, only then you are allowed to enter the field of play.

My Experience

I remember the referee penalizing me with a yellow card because I was warming up, too near the field of play. When I asked the referee if this was really necessary, referee asked me if I wanted one more yellow card.

My advice to you is: don't discuss with referee on the soccer field because it will only result in a warning, and you don't want that, do you? I know, sometimes it's impossible to be quiet, but you have to try at least, Good Luck anyway.

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