Football 5-a-side teams are made of four outfield players and one goalkeeper.
Outfield players must be classified as completely blind (B1 category), which means they have very low visual acuity and /or no light perception, whilst the goalkeeper me be sighted or partially sighted (B2 or B3 category).
To ensure fair competition, all outfield players must be eye patched and blindfolded. Teams can also have off-field guides to assist them.
The ball makes a noise due to a sound system located inside that helps players orientate themselves. The players have to say clearly, audibly the word “Go” or “Voy”when seeking, tackling or searching the ball. As a result spectators must remain silent whilst watching the game until a goal is scored.
Blind football is played on a rectangular field that measures 40m long and 20 meter wide. The whole length of the pitch must be covered by kickboards to prevent the ball from going out of play. The field shall always be uncovered to allow for optimum acoustics.
The duration of the match is 40 minutes, divided into 20 minute halves with half time interval not exceeding 10 minutes. Each team can request a one-minute time- out in each half. The timekeeper must stop the clock for a free kick, goal clearance, players substitution, corner kick, penalty or double penalty kick and a goal scored.
The public address system shall be set up on top of the timekeeper’s table; shall be used at all times to announce that play is stopped and to inform of all incidents during the match e.g : foul, goal score etc. shall also be used to ask the audience to remain silent.