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as of October 11, 2023
These Elite 64 Playoff Rules shall be an extension of the Elite 64 League Rules. With exception to the rules modifications contained herein, Elite 64 League Rules may apply.
SECTION 1. ELITE 64 PLAYOFFS – TEAMS & REGISTRATION
1.01 Team Eligibility
Any team registering for entry into the National League Elite 64 (E64) Playoffs must meet the eligibility requirements in accordance with the Elite 64 rules. Following the registration of all Elite 64 eligible teams, Elite 64 Regional League and National League Conference teams may apply for any remaining open slots.
1.02 Registration System
GotSport shall be the official team registration system of the E64 Playoffs. No registration will be received or accepted in any other system.
Eligible teams must have a GotSport account to be registered for the E64 Playoffs. Team accounts must have accurate information regarding the coach and manager at the time of submission.
1.03 Registration Deadlines
Deadlines for E64 Playoffs will be set forth by Elite 64 and communicated to the Elite 64 Club Advisory Groups.
1.04 Registration Agreement
Any team playing in the E64 Playoffs agrees to accept, abide by, and comply with all policies, rules, and decisions of the National League.
1.05 USYS Registration
To be eligible for participation in the E64 Playoffs, a team must be properly registered with USYS prior to participation in E64 Playoffs.
1.06 Fees and Other Expenses
E64 Playoffs fees are already included in a club’s E64 fees. All fees are non-refundable. Any accepted Elite 64 Regional League or National League Conference teams will be charged an event fee, payable upon acceptance.
E–mail will be the primary means of communication within the E64 Playoffs. Each team is responsible for ensuring accurate contact information is on file.
SECTION 2. ELITE 64 PLAYOFFS – AGES
The E64 Playoffs will include the following Boys and Girls age groups:
- 13 and Under (13U)
- 14 and Under (14U)
- 15 and Under (15U)
- 16 and Under (16U)
- 17 and Under (17U)
- 19 and Under (19U)
SECTION 3. ELITE 64 PLAYOFFS – PLAYER POOL
3.01 Player Eligibility
Any player properly registered to their E64 club (including club partnerships) for the current seasonal year and also registered with USYS or USYS member State Association may participate in the E64 Playoffs.
Elite 64 Regional League and National League Conference teams will be limited to those players who are registered as “primary” for such team, plus eligible “club pass” players. All primary and club pass players must be properly registered with USYS or USYS member state association.
3.02 Pool of Players
The is no maximum to the number of players in an E64 Playoffs Player Pool (i.e. GotSport Event Roster); however, only twenty-two (22) players may dress and play in a particular E64 Playoffs match.
3.03 Player Limitations
A player may be listed and participate in multiple player pools for the same club and may participate in multiple E64 Playoffs matches on the same day for their club.
SECTION 4. ELITE 64 PLAYOFFS – NL P.R.O.
4.01 Qualification to NL P.R.O.
On an annual basis, the NL Management Group shall determine the structure of the 14U-19U Playoff to determine the qualification of teams to NL P.R.O. Such a process will be communicated to participating clubs.
4.02 Qualification Slot to National Championships
A team that achieves a qualification slot from NL P.R.O. into the USYS National Championships is expected to honor the commitment to participate in the National Championships competition. Failure to field a team in such National competition may result in fines as determined by the NL Commissioner.
To be eligible for qualification into the USYS National Championships, a team must have participated in their State Association’s State Cup competition within the same seasonal year.
SECTION 5. ELITE 64 PLAYOFFS – SCHEDULING & MATCH MANAGEMENT
5.01 Games and Schedule
At the E64 Playoffs event, each team will be scheduled to play a minimum of three (3) games. Due to the nature of the knockout bracket scheduling, no scheduling requests will be considered, including requests to de-conflict a coach.
5.02 Lodging Requirement / Permission to Travel
To ensure the quality of service provided at the E64 Playoffs event, teams must utilize Anthony Travel for all their hotel accommodation needs. No team may make hotel/housing reservations for any E64 Playoff event outside of the USYS/Anthony Travel booking process. Teams that reside within 100 miles of the facility are not required to book hotels.
For E64 Playoffs, Permission to Host/Travel Forms are not required.
5.03 Responsibility of Teams
The team officials at a match are responsible for the behavior, conduct and control of team players, support staff, supporters including family and friends, and team management staff. Failure to abide by this rule may result in Disciplinary Action as determined by the NL Commissioner/Event Manager.
- For matches in the 13U and 14U age groups, unlimited substitution will be allowed.
- Matches in the 15U, 16U, 17U, and 18/19U age groups will operate under the FIFA-7 players “per half” substitution system. Once replaced, players cannot re-enter the game during that half of play.
- Substitutions may be made at any stoppage of play with the approval of the referee.
- Re-entry shall be at a normal substitution point (with approval of the referee) or at any point during the game if the referee signals for the player’s re-entry.
- During a match where a Health Care Professional (HCP) or Athletic Trainer Certified (ATC) is present, if a player is suspected of suffering a head injury, such player may be substituted for evaluation. The substitution for the evaluation of a concussion/head injury will not count toward the team’s total allowed substitutions in a half. However, the team must have at least one substitution available to implement this temporary substitution.
- If the player is deemed by the HCP or ATC to not have been diagnosed as having a possible concussion, the player may re-enter the game at any stoppage of play, with approval by the referee, and must replace the original substitute. This head injury evaluation substitution will not count as a used substitution in the half. Furthermore, the temporary substitute will be able to re-enter the game in that half at a later time.
- If the player is not cleared to return to play by the HCP or ATC, the replacement player will no longer be considered a temporary substitute and the team will be charged a substitution.
- Any discipline issued to the temporary substitute will count for the remainder of the game.
5.05 Match Length
|Age Group||Length of Each Half|
5.06 Match Result
All games played in Elite 64 Playoffs brackets must identify a winner. Any game that must identify a winner but ends in a tie (at the end of regulation time) shall proceed directly to Kicks from the Mark to determine the winner (no overtime periods). Kicks from the Mark will be governed by the IFAB Laws of the Game. Any of twenty-two (22) eligible players listed for that game are eligible to kick and do not need to be on the field at the end of regulation time.
5.07 Team Uniforms
Each player (except a goalkeeper) should have a number on the player’s jersey. The number shall be affixed to the back of the jersey and be clearly visible. Each player on a team should wear a number different from the number of every other player on the team. Numbered jerseys on goalkeepers are optional.
All teams are required to attend each match with two (2) sets of jerseys and socks for all their players; one set of light-colored jerseys and socks, and a second set of dark colored jerseys and socks. It is expected that the first team listed on the match schedule (i.e. home) is to wear light/white color jerseys and socks. When there is a conflict in uniform color, the team listed second on the Playoffs schedule (i.e. away) should change its jerseys and socks. The Referee shall define what constitutes light and dark color jerseys and socks. The NL Commissioner/Event Manager can assign jersey colors to teams for matches, should such procedure be deemed appropriate.
5.08 Uniform Logos and Patches
US Youth Soccer, National League, or other US Youth Soccer related logos/patches are allowed on uniforms, in addition to the team’s name, team sponsor, or shirt manufacturer.
Teams playing in E64 Playoffs are permitted to have the following limited items on their game uniforms:
- USYS logo or directly related USYS logoed patches
- Their individual club and/or team logo and team sponsor logo
- USYS partner logos
- Manufacturer of uniform logo
- Name/jersey number of player
No other patches or logos are permitted unless written permission is granted by USYS. All patches or logos not permitted must either be covered up or removed.
5.09 Coaching from Sidelines
Limited coaching is permitted only from one touch line from the team’s respective technical area (if marked) or from the centerline to no more than 5 yards from the end of the team bench closest to the goal line (if no technical area is marked). Team bench persons may not enter the field without permission from the referee. Only one coach per team may stand and give instruction at a time.
5.10 Team Bench Area and Supervision
No more than four (4) team bench persons (being only team coaches, team administrators, and team medical staff) shall be permitted at the team bench area during a match. All bench persons on the team sideline must have proper credentials issued by USYS or USYS member State Association. Players listed on the Game Card are permitted at the team bench area during a match. A coach, manager or team official must always supervise an E64 team at the Team Bench Area.
5.11 Send Offs and Dismissals
Any player sent off from an E64 Playoffs match must leave the field of play but shall remain in the Team Bench Area under the supervision of the player’s Coach. If the sent off player cannot be controlled by the Coach, the Referee may require the removal of the player from the entire field area. If such player is removed from the field area, the Coach must designate a parent or Team Official to supervise the player away from the field area.
Any team official dismissed from participating in a match must leave the field area and retreat to the parking area of the complex or an area designated by the NL Commissioner/Event Manager. Any team official who is dismissed is prohibited from communicating with his/her team while the team is at the field for its match, including but not limited to cell phone use, texting, tweeting, or other means of communication. Violation of this rule may result in further disciplinary action against the individual and/or team.
Any player sent off or non-player dismissed will be automatically suspended for the remainder of the day and next day of E64 Playoffs of the gender age group of the suspended player or non-player.
All send offs and dismissals, especially those that are a result of physical or verbal abuse, are to be reviewed by the National League Commissioner/Event Manager who, in consultation with the National League Management Group, may determine that an additional suspension shall be assessed. The Event Manager has the right to impose additional sanctions regarding any matters arising from participation in the E64 Playoffs as the result of the sending off.
5.12 Final Authority
The NL Commissioner/Event Manager shall have final authority to act in the best interest of the E64 Playoffs, which may include but not be limited to adjusting procedures and management for specific matches, applying E64 League Rules where applicable, or making decisions to address situations not covered in the E64 Playoffs Rules or E64 League Rules.