Sheffield Rules (1875)
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For works with similar titles, see Sheffield Rules.
- The maximum length of the ground shall be 200 yards, and the maximum breadth 100 yards. The length and breadth shall be marked of by flags, and the goals shall be upright posts, eight yards apart with a bar across them, nine feet from the ground.
- The winners of the toss shall have the choice of goals. The game shall be commenced by a place kick from the centre of the ground, by the side losing the toss; the opposite side shall not approch within 10 yards of the ball until it is kicked off, nor shall any player on either side past the centre of the ground in the direction of his opponents' goal until the ball is kicked.
- Ends shall only be changed at half time. After a goal is won, the losing side shall kick-off, but after the change of ends at half-time the ball shall be kicked off by the opposite side from that which originally did so, and always provided in law 2.
- A goal shall be won when the ball passes between the goal posts, under the bar, not being thrown, knocked on, or carried.
- When a ball is in touch, a player of the opposite side of that which kicked it out, shall kick it from where it went out, and no player be allowed within six yards of the ball, until kicked. The player who thus kicks the ball, shall not kick it again until it has been kicked by another player.
- Any player between the opponent's goal and goalkeeper (unless he has followed the ball there), is off-side and out of play. The Goalkeeper is the player on the defending side, for the time being, is nearest his own goal.
- When the ball is kicked over the bar of the goal, it must be kicked off by the side behind whose goal it went, within six yards from the limit of their goal. The side who thus kick the ball are entitled to a fair kick-off in whatever way they please; the opposite side not being allowed to approach within six yards of the ball. When the ball is kicked out behind the goal line, a player of the opposite side to that which kicked it out, shall kick it in from the nearest corner flag. No player to be allowed within six yards of te ball until kicked.
- No player, except the goalkeeper, shall stop the ball with his hand or arm extended from the body. The side breaking this rule forfeits a free kick to the opposite side, and the offending side shall not approach within six yards of the kicker; but nothing in this rule shall extend to drive them to stand behind their goal line. The defending side shall be exempt from this rule, within three yards of the goal.
- No goal shall be obtained by a free kick.
- Neither tripping nor hacking shall be allowed, and no player shall use his hands to hold or push his adversary, nor charge him from behind. Any player so offending, shall forfeit a free kick to the opposite side.
- No player shall wear spikes, projecting nails, or iron plates on the soles or heels of his boots. Any player so offending shall be considered out of play so long as the infringement continues, and no other player shall take his place.
- An umpire shall be appointed by each side, at the commencement of the game, to enforce the preceding rules, whose decision on all points during the game shall be final. And they shall be the sole judges of fair and unfair play, and have power to give a pnalty for foul play of any kind. Each umpire to be referee in that half of the field nearest the goal defended by the party nominating him. Each umpire to be referee in that half of the field nearest the goal defended by the party nominating him, and to be supplied with a small flag, or other conspicuous article, with which he can draw attention, the ball always being considered in play until he has given his decision.
Definitions of terms
- A 'Place Kick' is a kick at the ball while it is on the ground, in any position in which the kicker may choose to place it.
- A 'Free Kick' is the privilege of kicking at the ball without obstruction, in such manner as the kicker may think fit.
- 'Hacking' is kicking an adversary intentionally.
- 'Tripping' is throwing an adversary by the use of his legs.
- 'Knocking on' is when a player strikes or propels the ball with his hand or arm.
- 'Holding' includes the obstuction of a player by the hand, or any part of the arm below the elbow.
- 'Touch' is that part of the field outside the lines of flags.
- 'Handling' is playing the ball with the hand or arm.
Definition of rule 9
In the case of a free kick near the goal, any of the defending side stopping or attempting to stop the ball intentionally, it shall be considered to be played and not fouled.
- Changes from 1871:
- Law 1: replace "nine feet" with "eight feet" (proposed by Mr. Hall).
- Law 2: append "nor shall any player on either side past the centre of the ground in the direction of his opponents' goal until the ball is kicked".
- Law 3: law completely rewritten.
- Law 4: replace "tape" with "bar".
- Law 8: after "No player" insert "except the goalkeeper" (proposed by J. C. Clegg).
- Law 11: append "Any player so offending shall be considered out of play so long as the infringement continues, and no other player shall take his place".
- Law 12: append "and to be supplied with a small flag, or other conspicuous article, with which he can draw attention, the ball always being considered in play until he has given his decision" (proposed by J. C. Clegg).
- "Sheffield Football Association". Sheffield and Rotherham Independent lii (5115): 7. 1872-10-07.
- "Sheffield Football Clubs' Association". Sheffield and Rotherham Independent lii (5117): 3. 1872-10-09.
- "Sheffield Football Clubs' Association". Sheffield Daily Telegraph (5410): 4. 1872-10-09.
- "Sheffield Football Clubs' Association". Sheffield and Rotherham Independent lvii (5427): 10. 1873-10-11.
- "Sheffield Football Association". Sheffield and Rotherham Independent. lviii (4719): 3. 1874-10-15.
- "Sheffield Football Association]". The Sportsman: 6. 1875-02-27.
- "Sheffield Football Association". Sheffield Daily Telegraph: 3. 1875-02-26.
- "Sheffield Football Association". Sheffield and Rotherham Independent: 4. 1875-02-26.
- (Wikisource contributor note)
- "nine feet" in source, but newspaper articles describing the rules are unanimous that this was changed to "eight feet", in line with the Football Association rules. (Wikisource contributor note)