Have you ever wondered how long a football pitch is? The size of a football pitch can vary based on the club’s preferences and the stadium’s size, making it a complex question.
The dimensions of the professional football pitches vary significantly depending on the players’ age group and the format of football played. That’s why we have created this comprehensive football pitch size guide that provides detailed information on the measurements and markings of football pitches. This football field size guide includes the official dimensions for 5, 7, 9, and 11-a-side matches, an explanation of the standard lines you will find on these pitches, and the official football pitch sizes. Keep reading and learn what the standard lines on football pitches are used for.
How big is a football pitch?
Unfortunately, in one short sentence, we can’t answer “How big is a football field?”. However, typically, the length of a football pitch must be at least 100 yards (90m) and at most 130 yards (120 metres). Similarly, the width of the field should be at least 50 yards (45m) and at most 100 yards (90m).
During the early 1800s, when the football game was first established and rules were being developed, fields were typically around 200 yards long and used corner flags to mark the width of the pitch. It was in the mid-19th century that fields started incorporating lines to outline the perimeter of the playing area. This is when the recognizable professional soccer field we know today began to take shape.
While many sports courts and fields have precise pitch measurements, the size of a football field can vary greatly in length and width. This is especially true when considering different age groups and team formats.
Football pitch sizes by age
The Football Association (FA) suggests that children of different age groups should play on different size football fields and with different numbers of players. FA also advises including a safety area surrounding the pitch, commonly known as a runoff area, which generally adds an extra 6 yards to the pitch’s length and width.
According to FA (Football Association), children aged 7 and 8 should participate in Mini Soccer games, with each team having 5 players on the field at a time. It is recommended for these football games to use a size 3 ball and have goals measuring 12ft x 6ft. The suggested dimensions for the field are 40 yards in length (equivalent to 36.58m) and 30 yards in width (equivalent to 27.43m).
In football matches involving children under the age of 7 or 8, the penalty box is situated 9 yards (equivalent to 8.23m) away from the goal line and has a length of 16 yards (equivalent to 14.63m). The penalty spot is marked at a distance of 7 yards (equivalent to 6.40m) from the centre of the goal line, and there should be an additional area extending 3 yards (equivalent to 2.74m) around the field’s perimeter.
The dimensions and markings utilized for matches involving children under 7 or 8 are also commonly employed in senior 5 a-side games.
Players aged 9 and 10 should play matches with 7 players on each team on the pitch at one time. The suggested dimensions of the pitch are 60 yards (54.87m) x 40 yards (36.57m). It is recommended for these football games to use a size 3 ball and have goals measuring 12ft x 6ft.
In matches involving children under the age of 9 or 10, the penalty spot should be situated 8 yards (7.32m) from the centre of the goal line, and the penalty box should measure 18 yards (16.46M) x 10 yards (9.14m).
In the U11/12 leagues and competitions, the football games should be played with a 9 v 9 player format, using goals that measure 16ft x 7ft and a size 4 ball. The field should have dimensions of 80 yards x 50 yards.
For players 11 and 12 years old, the penalty spot should be placed 9 yards away from the centre of each goal, and the penalty box should measure 32 yards x 13 yards. The suggested goal size dimensions should be 4 yards x 14 yards.
Players aged 13 and 14 should play matches with 11 players on each team on the pitch at one time. The suggested dimensions of the pitch are 90 yards(82.3m) x 55 yards (50.2m). It is recommended for these football games to use a size 4 ball and have goals measuring 21ft x 7ft.
In matches involving children under the age of 13 or 14, the penalty spot should be placed 10 yards (9.14m) from the centre of the goals, and the penalty box should measure 14 yards (12.80m) x 32 yards (32.00m).
For players aged 15 and 16, the suggested dimensions of the football field must be 100 yards (91.44m) x 60 yards (54.86m). It’s recommended for these football games to use a size 5 ball and full-size 24ft x 8ft goals. At this age, the matches are 11 a side. In matches involving children under the age of 13 or 14, the penalty spot should be 12 yards (10.97m) from the centre of the goals, and the penalty box should measure 18 yards (16.46m) x 44 yards (40.23m).
Under 17/18 and seniors
When players turn 17, they start playing on full-size senior fields. The size of these fields can vary, especially at the amateur level, with official rules from IFAB (International Football Association Board) stating that football pitches can measure between 100 yards (91.4m) and 130 yards (118.9m) long and 50 yards (45.7m) to 100 yards (91.4m) wide.
While the size of regulation football fields can differ greatly, the recommended pitch dimensions for seniors should measure 110 yards (100.6m) x 70 yards (64m). According to IFAB’s Laws of the Game, international football fields should be between 110 yards (100.6m) and 120 yards (109.7m) long and 70 yards (64.0m) to 80 yards (73.2m) wide. Despite the official guidelines set by the FA, top-level football fields in England tend to be slightly bigger, with the average field measuring around 115 yards (105m) by 75 yards (68.8m).
Full-size pitches used by players aged 17 and above, have penalty spots marked 12 yards from the centre of each goal. The penalty boxes have dimensions of 18 yards (16.46m) by 44 yards (40.23m), and the goal areas are 6 yards (5.49m) by 20 yards (18.29m). The appropriate ball size is 5, and the goals should measure 24ft (7.32m) by 8ft (2.44m).
Football pitch markings explained.
The markings on a football pitch play a significant role in every match. They determine if the ball is in or out of play, a goal has been made, or a penalty should be given. The markings on football pitches are vital for football games at any level.
5-a-side football pitch dimensions and markings
In the UK, the most popular short-sided version of the football game is five-a-side football. This variant is typically played in leisure centres and specialized indoor and outdoor football facilities. It is also highly appreciated as a training method by professional coaches.
It is worth noting that the size of a 5-a-side football pitch is significantly smaller compared to a full-sized one. Additionally, the specific dimensions of the five-a-side football field depend on the available space and the coach’s preferred style of play.
FIFA states that the minimum size for a 5 a side football pitch should be 30m long and 20m wide. The dimensions for a football 5s court should be at most 35m long and 25m wide. The FA recommends a 5 v 5 pitch size for the under-7s and under-8s age groups. The penalty areas must be 6.5 yards (6m) from the centre of the goal lines regardless of the overall pitch size. It’s important to note that different football authorities, like the FA in England, have their regulations on pitch dimensions. For instance, the FA specifies that the 5-a-side pitch size should be 36.6m long and 27.5m wide.
7-a-side football pitch dimensions and markings
Understandably, the size of a 7-a-side football field is slightly bigger than the five-a-side field. This is necessary to accommodate an additional four players.
Although the 7-a-side pitch can be used for adult amateur football games, it is most commonly used for players under 9 and 10.
As per FIFA, a 7-player football field dimensions should be a minimum length of 45m and a width of 30m.
According to FIFA regulations, the maximum pitch dimensions for a 7v7 pitch are 50m in length and 35m in width. The penalty area arcs should be from the penalty spot at a radius of 7 yards (6.4m).
For under-9s and under-10s, the FA recommends using the dimensions specified for seven-a-side football. However, the exact measurements may vary depending on the governing body. In England, for instance, the FA mandates that the dimensions for a 7-a-side pitch should be 54.86m long and 36.6m wide.
9-a-side football pitch dimensions and markings
The size of a 9-a-side football pitch should be big enough for 18 players and a referee. Therefore, it should be slightly bigger than the fields used for 5v5 and 7v7 football games.
The dimensions of the 9-a-side pitch need to fit 18 players and a referee; therefore, it should be a bit bigger than the 5v5 and 7v7 variations.
A 9-a-side football field size should be a minimum of 60m in length and 45m wide.
The under-11s and under-12s age groups play with a 9 aside pitch size. But governing bodies have the power to choose the exact dimensions. For example, FA 9v9 pitch dimensions are 73.1m long by 45.72m wide.
11-a-side football pitch dimensions and markings
The football field size used in the adult football game is called the 11-a-side pitch. However, these measurements can differ based on the regulations of the governing organization. Nevertheless, FIFA’s guidelines specify a range of dimensions for the field.
- The size of an 11-a-side football pitch must be at least 90m long and 45m wide.
- The maximum dimensions for an 11-a-side football pitch size are 120m in length and 90m in width.
This provides professional football clubs with numerous options for creating football pitch markings. The rules set by the English FA specify that the length of an 11-a-side pitch can range from 90m to 120m, and the width of a football pitch can range from 45m to 90m. Goalposts must measure 8 feet high (2.44m) and 8 yards wide (7.32m) at this level. Hence, Premier League football clubs have no identical football pitch dimensions.
But there are slightly different dimensions for children’s 11-a-side football pitch:
- Under-13s and under-14s should have an 11-a-side football pitch size of 82.2m by 50.2m.
- Under-15s and under-16s should have an 11-a-side pitch size of 91.4m by 54.8m.
- Adults playing in the National League System should have an 11-a-side football pitch size of 100.5m by 65m.
What are the standard football pitch dimensions?
The standard dimensions of a football pitch are 100-130 yards in length and 50-100 yards in width. These dimensions can vary depending on the level of play, the type of football you’re playing and the governing body’s regulations.
Are there any guidelines for football pitch sizes?
Yes, there are guidelines for field sizes set by the respective governing bodies, such as FIFA. These guidelines ensure that all pitches meet certain standards to maintain fairness in the game.
What is the purpose of marking on a football pitch?
Soccer pitch markings serve various purposes. They indicate boundaries, centre circles, penalty areas, and goal areas. These markings help players and officials determine positions, distances, and areas relating to different aspects of the game.
Is there a specific size for a professional football pitch?
Yes, professional fields of play generally have standard dimensions mentioned earlier. However, there can be some flexibility depending on local regulations and other factors, as long as the integrity of the game is not compromised.