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The Laws of Soccer 101: The Match Duration

It was only a matter of time before we reached the the 7th Law of Soccer (pun intended), the match duration. Personally, I don’t think it is a waste of your time to learn that the Law #7 states that matches must last 90 minutes (plus time lost) with two 45 minute halfs.

It also specifies that the half time period can last no longer than 15 minutes.

I would be lying if I didn’t say I have been having a hard time trying to come up with a Pop Quiz related to this Law, probably because it is one of the shortest and most boring in the rule book. But, since time immemorial, some folks have wondered about how “extra time” or “injury time” is calculated. So, I’m here in the nick of time to show you:

Which of the following events requires the referee to add extra time to the end of a half?

A. Substitutions.

B. Injuries.

C. Intentional Delays.

D. “Any other cause” @ the ref’s discretion.

E. All of the above.

It’s about time for the answer, and it’s (E), of course. There is also a wrinkle to the rule whereby a half is extended indefinitely if a team gets a penalty kick when it would have otherwise expired (talk about time being on one’s side). Another facet of this rule is that the referee may reduce the second half to 40 minutes “because of insufficient light”.

This post makes me feel like I am just killing time though because this is probably the most boring rule we will take the time to discuss. It’s time I should be going now, and I am sure you think it is high time I quit with these ridiculous idioms. Unlike Swayze in Dirty Dancing, you likely haven’t had the “time of your life.” Only time will tell though.

I guess I should give you a third apology for the idioms. As they say, third time’s the charm. OK, I’m done.

I know what you are thinking… It’s about time.