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NYSA strives to create a fun, fair environment for all players. One of the biggest frustrations expressed by players and parents is teams losing by a lopsided score. Saturday games should not be times to blowout friends, classmates, and neighbors. Players leave these games with destroyed confidence and some quit the sport completely.

While NYSA takes steps to distribute talent evenly, dominant teams and lopsided scores still happen. However, coaches have the ability to control this issue using strategies listed below. These strategies should be implemented when the goal differential hits 4 goals. This allows for a small cushion, but the differential should never exceed 6 or more. 

  • Remove a player on the dominant team from the field and play with less players.

  • Add a player to the weaker team, allowing them to play with more players.

  • Encourage players on the dominant team to only shoot with their weak foot.

  • Require players on the dominat team to pass 3-5 times before shooting.

  • Dominant teams can create stronger groups and weaker groups. When the weaker group is on the field, it gives the other team a better chance to score. Encourage the stronger group to pass or even play keep away.

  • Dominant teams should rotate players into less familiar positions.

  • It is usally clear from the start if a game is going to be uneven. Coaches of dominant teams should identify this early and encourage stronger players to get weaker players involved from the beginning. Watching a team pass to a player that has never scored a goal over and over is fun and rewarding for everyone.


NYSA has created the following policy related to lopsided scores.


  • U8 and U10 games should not end with a 6+ goal differential.

  • The first time a team wins by 6 or more goals and is reported to the in-town director or league president, the coaches on the winning team will be issued a warning.

  • The second time this same team wins by 6 or more goals, the roster will be adjusted with strong players moving to other teams.

  • The third time this same team wins by 6 or more goals, the head coach will receive a 1 game suspension.

  • U6 does not keep score and plays on multiple fields. While there is no official policy, all coaches must do their best to keep games fun and even.

  • U12 and U14 travel leagues follow the policy set by ECYSA.