Soccer Academy Alliance Canada

Competition Rules

Note: These rules are taken from the official SAAC policies and procedures. In case of a discrepancy, the SAAC Policy document shall take precedence.


(a)        SAAC shall support the member academies in establishing a seasonal program that provides suitable competition for academy players

(b)       SAAC reserves the right to impose restrictions on competitions if it believes that the standards set out by the association are being compromised.

(c)        Academies failing to abide by these restrictions are subject to discipline as defined herein.

Provincial Inter-Academy Competition

(a)        Where numbers permit, SAAC shall endeavour to provide a match structure to facilitate inter‑academy competition.

(b)       A competition committee will be established to govern the league. The committee will have the mandate to maintain the standards of the competition for the benefit of all members. This includes (but is not limited to):

i.  Altering the published schedule to maintain competitive balance

ii.  Allowing players and/or teams to play out of their registered division to maintain competitive balance

(c)        Competitions will be open to all member academies based in the boundaries identified by the competition committee.

(d)       Any member academy within the stated boundaries may register a team in a SAAC sanctioned league.

(e)       The structure of the inter-academy competition program shall be established by the competition committee.



Cup/Playoff Competition

(a)        For SAAC matches in which a winner must be declared,teams will compete in penalty kicks per FIFA rules when the score is tied after regulation time.



Declaring a League Champion

(a)        In the event two teams are tied for 1st place at the end of a season, a winner shall be declared using the following tie-breakers (in order of application):

i. Points in head-to-head competition (in the event more than 2 teams are tied, head-to-head can only be used if each team played an equal number of games against the other tied teams)

ii. Greater Number of Wins

iii. Better Goal Differential

iv. Coin Toss


Competition Guidelines


(a)        Substitutes shall report to the fourth official or assistant referee at midfield, and may not enter the field without the permission of the referee.  Substitutions can be requested at the following stoppages:

i.  After the awarding of goal or goal kick

ii.  At the half-time break

iii.  At your own throw-ins, or opponent throw-ins if they are also making a substitution

iv.  To replace an injured player

(b)       All substitutions are at the discretion of the referee.


SAAC Schedule

(a)        SAAC schedule is official when posted to the public by SAAC.  The official SAAC schedule and updated changes are posted on the official web site of the Academy Competition (


Scheduling Changes

(a)        All schedule changes need to be approved by the SAAC office.  All game change requests must comply with the rules below.

(b)       Request made to SAAC at least 28 days prior to match:

i.  $25 rescheduling fee

ii.  Team is responsible for obtaining agreement from the opposing team and either finding a suitable free slot on the CDS calendar or a suitable alternate venue and qualified officials. (Both SAAC and the opposing team must agree to any venue change)

(c)        Request made to SAAC between 8-28 days prior to match:

i.  $50 rescheduling fee

ii.  Other conditions as above

(d)       Request made to SAAC less than 8 days prior to match:

i.  $100 rescheduling fee

ii.  Other conditions as above

(e)       SAAC does not guarantee that all requests will be accepted.



(a)        All teams must provide their completed team roster to the SAAC convener prior to each match. Team players and staff must have their SAAC Identification Card available for inspection, if required. 

(b)        Players must be properly registered with SAAC prior to appearing in a match. Rosters must meet the following age requirements:

i.  Players must be born on or after January 1st, of the division year.

ii.  Two (2) additional overage players (within 1 calendar year) can be added to a game sheet on a game-by-game basis


Incomplete Games

(a)        In the event that a game cannot continue through full regulation play the game will count if one-half of the game was completed.

(b)       If there is no result and the match is suspended prior to the expiration of one-half due to inclement weather or extenuating circumstances, it will be rescheduled in consultation with the SAAC office.

(c)        The Referee / SAAC convener have the final decision on postponing a game due to weather or field conditions.


Postponing a Game Prior to Start

A game may be called off / postponed no earlier than two hours prior to kick-off because of inclement weather or situations considered acts of God, unless agreed to by both teams and the SAAC office. 


Grace Period Before Abandoning a Game

Unless both teams, the referee, and the SAAC convener agree to an alternate plan, teams must wait one hour before abandoning a game that has been delayed.



Fines will be assessed for violation of SAAC rules, game changes, and any minimum standard requirements. 



Deposits for the season will be required at a date specified by the SAAC Office.  Prior to the scheduling meetings all competition fees must be paid in full.  All payments must be made out to SAAC.


Game Cancellation Criteria

Competition game cancellations should occur only in the most serious circumstances, however the personal safety of participants, personnel, and spectators shall always be highest priority.


Rescheduling Considerations

SAAC conveners will have the authority to review all the facts, (including fault on the part of either team, unavoidable conditions, expense for both teams, and requests by a team to take a particular action in the best interests of SAAC and its teams) in determining whether and when a game shall be rescheduled, who should bear the financial burden as a result of cancellation or rescheduling, whether the game should be forfeited or cancelled permanently, and whether other fines should be levied. 


No-show / Forfeit

(a)        A no-show occurs when an academy team willfully does not show up at a game and there has been no SAAC approved written agreement for a change of the scheduled game.  Penalties for no-shows are as follows:

i.  A forfeit to the opposing team and additional loss of three (3) points in the standings

ii.  If a team fails to meet game schedule obligations and fails to attend a match, the Academy will be fined in the amount of $500.00

iii. One no-show may result in a team being terminated at the discretion of the SAAC

iv. The accumulation of two no-shows in a season shall result in forfeiture of a team

v. A forfeit will result in a 2-0 win to the team not at fault

(b)       A team unable to attend a scheduled game because of an accident, weather or Act of God should immediately notify the opponent and the SAAC office.  Each situation will be reviewed by the SAAC office, which shall render a decision that may be appealed through SAAC.

(c)       For the Showcase Divisions, teams required to borrow players will default the result to the opposing team.


Withdrawal of an Academy

(a)        In the event an Academy withdraws a team from the SAAC without finishing its scheduled games, it shall forfeit its membership and the following regulations will take effect:

i.   If at least half of the full schedule of games has been played, all resulting scores stand as validated by the SAAC Office.  Any unscheduled remaining games shall be recorded as a forfeit victory for the opponents. (mainly for the showcase division)

ii.  If less than one-half of the full schedule of games has been played, these completed games will be deleted from the standings (Showcase division)

iii. SAAC may, at its discretion, reschedule any or all remaining games


Conduct & Discipline



(a)        Following a game, a coach serving a suspension may enter the locker room, but must not be in or around the field of play.   Coaches must sit in the press box or in some location other than in the grandstand.  If this is not possible, then the coach is prohibited from attending the game.

(b)       Communication via cellular, 2-way radios, electronic, written or verbal is strictly prohibited.  Additional fines and/or suspensions will result.

(c)        Extending a Suspension -- In any case, the SAAC reserves the right to impose suspensions beyond any of these parameters for offences deemed to be particularly violent and against the spirit of the game.


Commencement of Suspensions

(a)        Suspensions and fines will be publicized the 1st weekend following the occurrence and will come into effect on the 2nd weekend following the occurrence.

(b)       If requested, discipline hearings will take place the 2nd weekend after the offence occurred. If the team is not scheduled to play at the main facility (CDS) that weekend, the hearing may be moved to the next such opportunity. In these cases, the suspension would not come into effect until after the hearing.


SAAC Disciplinary Committee

(a)        A panel of individuals from the SAAC Office shall conduct the review of disciplinary issues.  Such a panel will consist of at least three people on the board, one of which includes the Competition Director.

(b)       The penalties described herein act as a guideline.  SAAC reserves the right to impose further sanctions, if warranted.

(c)        A $25 fine will accompany all Cautions and a $50 fine will accompany all Ejections handed out in SAAC competition.


SAAC Fine for Serious Incidents

SAAC has the power to impose fines up to $5,000 for any incident bringing the game into disrepute.        


Scandalous Conduct

The SAAC Office may suspend for a definite period and/or impose a fine on any officer, director, player or employee of a member Academy guilty of gross misbehaviour in public, including intoxication, drug use, fighting, indecency or other scandalous conduct, whether on or off the playing field, when such conduct is, in the SAAC Office's opinion, prejudicial to the best interests of the sport of soccer or SAAC.


Moral Truth

Any employee, player or official of any member Academy or the SAAC who shall be convicted of a felony, or who shall have been found by the SAAC Office to have conducted themselves in a manner detrimental to the best interests of soccer or the SAAC, may be declared by the SAAC Office to be suspended for such period of time as the SAAC Office shall deem to be appropriate.



No manager, officer or representative of a Academy shall approach a registered player, coach or staff member of another Academy regarding employment unless that contracted party's employing Academy gives written permission to the requesting Academy to make such contact.  Violations of this rule shall subject the offending party to disciplinary action from the SAAC Office.


Conduct of Spectators

(a)        Academies are responsible for their own fans and are thus required to do what is in their power to keep their fans in accordance with the rules.

(b)       If fans are acting inappropriately, the head referee will have the right to warn and/or dismiss a fan away from the field. If fan interference becomes out of the control of the referee, the referee will have the authority to cancel the game.

(c)        If the fan does not co-operate with the referee, the SAAC officials will have the right to dismiss the fan and/or notify the authorities of the situation.

(d)       Cancellation of a game due to fan interference will ­not result in a re-scheduled game.


Vandalism / Destruction of Property

(a)        No player, manager, officer, or representative of an Academy shall intentionally damage or destroy the physical property of another Academy.  This prohibition shall extend to the damage and destruction of locker rooms or other area of a leased or owned stadium facility.


Other Misconduct

(a)        Nothing contained in this rule shall be construed as exclusively defining or otherwise limiting conduct, acts, transactions, or practices that are not in the best interests of the sport of soccer or of SAAC.  Any and all other conducts, acts, transactions or practices which are not in the best interests of soccer or the SAAC are prohibited and shall be subject to such penalties imposed by the SAAC Office, such as permanent ineligibility, ineligibility for a period of time, suspension of voting rights, suspension from playing, or suspension of an individual from sitting on committee or advisory board, as the facts in the particular case may, in his/her opinion, warrant.


Appeals & Complaints


(a)        All Complaints must: 

i.   Specifically refer to the Rule in the manual that is being violated.  (Refer to Page No. and Item very specifically)

ii.  Should a Rule not exist to resolve your problem or wrong, then provide a simple statement on the problem form

(b)       No complaint can result in the overturning of a game's result, although point forfeiture and other penalties may result from a complaint that has been upheld.


Types of Complaints

(a)        By participating in SAAC competitions, your Team Management and players agree to utilize this process exclusively for the resolution of all disputes.  Each type has its own progressive steps of review and final resolution.  Each type and each step have very exacting requirements, both in format and timing.  The party that misses or errs in format and/or does not adhere to time schedules loses a complaint, all rights to proceed and the decision, or in some cases the non-decision at the last step properly undertaken is final and binding.

(b)       The four (4) types of Complaints are as follows:

i.   A complaint about events that occur on the field of play during a game, pre-game or post game, affecting some component or outcome of the game

ii.  A complaint between your team management and another team management and/or players that is not about events upon the field or surrounding a game.  These complaints are purely business and have no direct impact on a game's outcome

iii.  A complaint about the SAAC, SAAC office, officer, staff member, or Executive Committee member in their official capacity (not as Academy Owners, but as a SAAC official.)

iv.  A complaint about a referee, linesman or related person


Filing a Complaint

A complaint must be filed within 48 hours after the incident took place.


Discipline Appeals

(a)        Notice of appeal shall be received by SAAC no later than the Tuesday following publication of the penalty.

(b)       If requested, discipline hearings will take place the 2nd weekend after the offence occurred. If the team is not scheduled to play at the main facility (CDS) that weekend, the hearing may be moved to the next such opportunity. In these cases, the suspension would not come into effect until after the hearing.

(c)        The Fee to request a hearing is $100. Fees are refundable if a decision is overturned by appeal.

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