Coed Team Balance Rule
To address team gender imbalance between the teams’ referees will ask coaches during team check-ins for the number of males and females present for their team. To be considered balanced, then both teams must have either:
- at least 45% females (one less than half of total) present at the field
- both teams have the same number of females present
If either of these conditions are met the teams are considered balanced and the team balance rule does not apply to the match (regardless of how many males or females are actively on the pitch) and it is up to the coaches to manage their substitutes with sportsmanship and playing time in mind. The team balance can be re-evaluated until the game’s start time if additional players show-up after check-in.
If neither of the above conditions are met then teams are deemed to not be balanced and the following team balance rule is in effect (the referee is required to monitor these ratios throughout the match):
When one team has two or more females actively playing on the field than the other team, then any of the goals scored by males on the team with fewer females do not count (including own goals off an attacking male kick) and the restart is either a goal kick or corner kick depending on who touched it last if the ball goes into the goal. All goals by females on both teams will count, and goals by males on the team with more females will also count.
- Team A has 3 females and 8 males, team B has 5 females and 6 males – teams not balanced – no goals by males allowed by team A when team B has 2 or more females active on the field than team A
- Team A has 5 females and 7 males, team B has 5 females and 8 males – both teams are balanced – all goals count
- Team A has 4 females and 5 males, team B has 5 females and 4 males – both teams are balanced – all goals count
- Team A has 9 females and 3 males, team B has 8 males and 4 females – teams not balanced – no goals by males allowed by team B when team A has 2 or more females active on the field than team B
When team balance rule is in effect referees need to keep track of gender balance counts on the field to ensure correct restarts after ball entering the goal. This rule is being trialed for the fall/spring season and is subject to modifications based on results seen during the season.
We would like to emphasize that good sportsmanship should be a key component of the Coed league and referees should be diligent in protecting players. Team sportsmanship should also a key consideration for Coed coaches such that significant goal differentials during games should be actively managed and addressed. Games with goal differentials greater than 6 goals will be reported by the referees to the Regional Referee Administrator and Regional & Coach administrator through email.