COVID Resources and Modifications

The safety of our communities is our main concern. Every player, coach, referee, and spectator is required to adhere to all published guidelines and protocols, including all revisions made available, from the federal, state, or local government, as well as MA Youth Soccer, MSRC, BAYS, and town soccer organizations.

Summary of COVID Modifications to the Game Environment:

  • Each team is required to have a COVID-19 Safety Coordinator while on the field. These adults are responsible for team and spectator compliance with the guidelines.
    • Referees are NOT responsible for enforcing COVID protocols around masks, etc.; they are there to call the match.
    • If COVID guidelines are not being followed by a team or spectators, the COVID Safety Coordinators should step in to address the situation and request/mandate compliance.
  • Coaches must understand the changes made to the game itself to reduce and eliminate contact.
  • Coaches should supply a paper roster to the referee. They can place it on the ground for the referee to collect.
    • Absent players and coaches must be crossed off the game roster and player numbers annotated if needed before giving the roster to the referee.
    • If a coach wants a copy of the opposing team roster, they can request an electronic copy from the opposing coach when communicating earlier in the week 
  • Home coach provides a sanitized ball and should have backup sanitized balls ready to be provided to the referee (kicked, not thrown in) when the game ball needs to come out of play.
    • If the ball is touched by hands other than the keeper, it must be taken out of play and sanitized.
  • Goalkeepers are permitted to touch the ball, preferably with gloves although gloves are not required.
    • Goalkeepers should be reminded not to touch their faces and to sanitize their hands before and after their shift in goal.
  • Players (and coaches/referees/spectators) are required to wear face coverings.
    • The default expectation is that face coverings remain in place over the player's nose and mouth DURING play and on the sidelines when not having a water/mask break.
    • The only type of face covering permissible for players is the ear-looped style face covering. No neck gaiters.
  • Spectators are limited. Only 1 spectator allowed per player; Coaches are not counted as spectators.
    • Exception: Any spectator who is responsible for other minors and is not able to have them cared for by others is permitted to be in attendance as a spectator with such children with them at all times.
  • Spectators must wear masks AT ALL TIMES
    • Spectators must keep at least 8 ft from the field sidelines and 6 ft from each other with no spectators behind the goals or team sideline area.

Keep in Mind - Things That Have NOT Changed:

  • Coaches for an upcoming match must contact each other by no later than Wednesday.
    • Confirm understanding that specific home town rules apply; Some towns do not allow ANY mask exemptions. List of those towns is here
    • Confirm game arrival time as there may be restrictions.
  • Coaches should keep their BAYS Division Director in the loop as to the status of games not played as scheduled.
  • All coaches on the sideline (maximum of 3) must have MYSA 2020-2021 credentials. The game may not kick off if there is not a credentialed adult in each technical area.
  • Only players printed on the official roster that has been approved by BAYS in the Roster Management System may play in a match.
  • The BAYS Zero Tolerance policy must be followed by coaches and spectators:
  • Coaches should use appropriate strategies to avoid running up the score in lopsided games but keep in mind the temporary modifications to the game currently in place.
  • Coaches can file Game Feedback reports in BAYS to alert the appropriate people to certain situations. Feedback can be positive or negative:
    • Referee Feedback - Goes to the home town referee assignor and BAYS Officials
    • Sportsmanship Feedback - Goes to both involved Club Presidents and BAYS Officials
    • COVID Concern Feedback - Goes to both involved Club Presidents and BAYS Officials

Current Guidance Links:

Mass Youth Soccer Return to Soccer Activities

Temporary Modifications to the Laws of the Game

Mass State Referee Return to Play

CDC information regarding COVID-19

Reopening Massachusetts Youth and Adult Sport memorandum