Attacker Defender Goalkeeper (ADG) occurs after the match has ended and unless otherwise stated, the relevant Laws of the Game apply.


Before ADG starts

  1. Unless there are other considerations (e.g. ground conditions, safety etc.), the referee tosses a coin to decide the half of the field where ADG will take place, which may only be changed for safety reasons or if the goal or playing surface becomes unusable.
  2. The referee tosses a coin again and the captain of the team who wins the toss, decides whether to attack or defend in the first contest.
  3. If at the beginning of ADG one team has more players on the field than the other, they maintain that advantage.
  4. The referee meets separately with each team and records their five attackers and the order in which they will compete.
  5. A goalkeeper is ineligible as an attacker.
  6. During ADG

  7. Only the eligible players and match officials are permitted to remain on the field of play.
  8. With the exception of the attacker, defender and goalkeepers, all players must remain inside the penalty area that is out of play and will be supervised by an assistant referee or an additional assistant referee.
  9. The goalkeeper of the attacking team must remain a safe distance behind the assistant referee or the additional assistant referee who is positioned on the goal line.
  10. If a team is unable to field their designated attacker or an eligible substitute, the team will forfeit that contest.
  11. After seeing the attacker, the opposing team fields their defender.
  12. Players designated as an attacker are ineligible as a defender.
  13. If a team is unable to field a defender or an eligible substitute, the attacker will compete one-on-one against the goalkeeper.
  14. Half of the field is in play.
  15. The attacker kicks off and is allowed thirty seconds to try and score a goal.
  16. The attacker may touch the ball an unlimited number of times.
  17. If a goal is scored, the contest is over.
  18. If the ball goes out of play, the contest is over.
  19. If the goalkeeper controls the ball with their hands inside the penalty area, the contest is over.
  20. If thirty seconds elapse, the contest is over.
  21. If the attacker commits a foul, the contest is over.
  22. If the defender or goalkeeper commits a foul, the attacker is awarded a penalty kick and the thirty second time period is disregarded for the remainder of the contest.
  23. If before the penalty kick has been taken, the attacker commits an offence, the referee allows the kick to be taken and if the ball does not enter the goal, the contest is over.
  24. If after the penalty kick has been taken, the attacker touches the ball again (with any part of the body) before it has touched another player, the contest is over.
  25. If an incident occurs that would normally require play to be restarted by a dropped ball, the contest must be restarted.
  26. The referee keeps a record of the contests.
  27. An eligible player may change places with the goalkeeper.
  28. With the exception of the condition explained above, players may not change places.
  29. Subject to the conditions explained below the teams play a total of ten contests

  30. Teams take turns attacking and defending.
  31. With the exception of each team's goalkeeper, a player is not allowed to compete in a second contest until all eligible players on both teams have competed in a contest.
  32. If before the completion of the ten contests, one team has scored more goals than the other could score, even if the contests were to be completed, no more contests will occur.
  33. If at the completion of the ten contests, the scores are level, then the contests continue with the same order of players, until one team has scored one more goal than the other from the same number of contests.
  34. Substitutions, cautions and send offs during ADG

  35. Teams receive two additional substitutions and any unused substitutions can also be used.
  36. A defender or goalkeeper who commits an offence which denies an obvious goal-scoring opportunity to an attacker, is not cautioned or sent off unless:
    • The offence is holding, pulling or pushing, or there is no attempt to play the ball, in which case the player is cautioned.
    • The offending player deliberately handles the ball (except a goalkeeper within their penalty area), in which case the player is sent off.
    • The offence is one which is always punishable by a yellow or red card. (e.g. reckless or excessive force challenge)
  37. The referee must not abandon ADG if a team is reduced to fewer than seven players.

Player and Referee Starting Positions

Player and Referee Starting Positions with Additional Assistant Referees

"When you go into extra time, we're talking about drama.
But when we reach the penalty shootout, it's a tragedy."

Joseph S. Blatter
Former FIFA President