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Question Number: 30003

Law 4 - Players Equipment 12/20/2015

RE: Competative Under 15

Phillip Torres of Chicago, IL US asks...

Just received rules for new indoor league facility. Specifies that no hard cleats allowed. This is different than all other local options that permit normal outdoor cleats. Regrettably we have already paid so are locked in.

I protested this rule to the league and they suggested playing in turf or running sneakers. Many of my players are lower income and I can't in good conscience ask parents to purchase new turf shoes for one season. Also, I don't believe FIFA rules permit play in running shoes - but am not certain and can't find any detail on permissible shoes in Laws of the Game.

Can you assist in clarifying allowable shoes per FIFA - and specifically if running shoes are allowed?

Thank you very much,

Answer provided by Referee Gary Voshol

The only thing in the Laws of the Game is that a player's equipment includes footwear. It doesn't specify what kind or kinds are allowed.

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Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Phil
Generally the footwear that players use is to provide them with a degree of protection and also more importantly good traction on the surface.
If a player wishes to play in sneakers then I would allow that as it is footwear. Indeed some of the modern cleats are made of material softer than sneakers. If opponents are prevented from playing in hard cleats then there is no safety issue.
Ultimately it is up to the referee on the day to decide.

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Answer provided by Referee Jason Wright

Hi Phillip,

The LOTG only state that shows must be worn and that players must not wear equipment dangerous to themselves or others.

Some referee would considers joggers to be unsafe as they provide little actual protection to the foot, being made of softer material than cleats. This would only be a potential issue playing against cleats (and I'm not necessarily claiming that's a correct interpretation, but it is up to the referee). Against other turf boots or sneakers I don't think that concern applies, so I can't see any way they would be unsafe.

I'd imagine a number of your opponents will be playing in sneakers as well.

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