It is very important that the team leaders know the rules of the tournament

1. Tournament’s rules

At the Donosti Cup International Football Tournament teams from federated clubs, football schools legally constituted and schools playing in their country leagues can participate. The tournament will be played in accordance with FIFA and SPANISH FOOTBALL FEDERATION rules (F.E.F.). These rules are in reference to the matches played in 11-a-side and 8-a-side.

2. Nature of the teams

The "Donosti Cup" is an open tournament in which federated Football Clubs, Football Schools, Technification Academies, Territorial or National Teams, and Educational Centres participating in school leagues can participate.

3. Competition system

The participating teams will be divided into groups of 4 or 5 teams that will play each other in a single round-robin league. The 1st Phase matches will be played on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, although in the case of groups of 5 teams it is possible that a team may have to play 2 matches on the same day or on Thursday.

At the end of this 1st Phase, the 1st and 2nd team of each group will qualify for the Champions League and the 3rd and 4th for the Europa League. The 5th placed team will be automatically eliminated.

Scoring of the matches 

11-a-side football

Match won: 3 points.
Match drawn: 1 point.
Match lost: 0 points.

8-a-side football

Time won: 2 points
Tied time: 1 point
Time lost: 0 points

Duration of matches

Football 11

2 x 25 min.

Football 8-a-side

1st round (League)

2 x 15 mins + 1 x 20 mins

2nd Phase (Knockout)

2 x 25 mins

Duration of breaks

Football 11

4 min on the pitch, not in the changing rooms.

Football 8-a-side

1 min on the pitch, not in the changing rooms.

4. Categories


B25 Boys born after 1-1-1998
B19 Boys born after 1-1-04
B16 Boys born after 1-1-07
B15 Boys born after 1-1-08
B14 Boys born after 1-1-09
B13 Boys born after 1-1-10
B12 Boys born after 1-1-11
B11 Boys born after 1-1-12
B10 Boys born after 1-1-13
B9   Boys born after 1-1-14


G25 Girls born after 1-1-1998
G19 Girls born after 1-1-04
G17 Girls born after 1-1-06
G14 Girls born after 1-1-09
G12 Girls born after 1-1-11
G10 Girls born after 1-1-13

Age control

All the players of the tournament will be identified with a bracelet that will certify their birth year depending the colour after showing their passport or identity card.
It will be compulsory to have this bracelet to play a game. All the bracelets of the players will be checked before the beginning of a game.
If any player had his bracelet lost or torn, he/she will have to show proof of identity and age again at any of the fields and paying 5€. If the bracelet was torn playing a game, it would be replaced for free.

5.- Special permits

It is allowed that one player who plays in the tournament plays in two different teams of the same club. The teams have to be from different categories and the player must be registered as explained in the 12th article.

A player cannot play in two or more teams of the same category, even if the categories belong to the same club.

In the categories B25 and G25 three older players one year older will be able to play.

In the categories B19, B16, B15, B14, B13, G19, G17 and G14 a maximum of 2 one year older players can play.

In B10, B11, B12, B9, G12 and G10 categories, older players will not be able to play. 

In B10, B11, B12 categories girls or mixed teams will be able to play if they fulfil the ages of their category.

In all of the girls’ categories boys will not be allowed to play. In the B13 and B14 categories, it will be possible to have a maximum of 2 girls per team.

6.- Qualifying standards

Football 11

1st round (League)

In the event of a tie on points in the final classification between two or more teams, the classification criteria to be followed to resolve the tie will be as follows:

1º- Particular Golaverage: Results of the matches played between the tied teams.
2º- Overall points average. Difference of goals for and against, taking into account all the league matches (*).
3rd- Fair play. Lower coefficient in disciplinary sanctions. (Point 11).
4º- Higher number of goals scored in favour, taking into account all league matches.
5º- Computer draw

(*) In case of a triple tie, the goals scored and received by the teams not involved will not be taken into account.


2nd round (Knockout)

The matches of the Final Phase that end in a draw will be decided directly by penalty kicks according to FIFA rules. There will be no extra time. 


Football 8-a-side

1st round (League)

In the event of a tie on points in the final classification between two or more teams, the classification criteria to be followed to resolve the tie shall be as follows:

1º- Particular Golaverage: Points obtained in the matches played between the tied teams (*).
2º- Fair play. Lower coefficient in disciplinary sanctions. (Point 11).
3rd- Computer draw

(*) In case of triple tie, the goals scored and received by the teams not involved will not be taken into account.


2nd Phase (Knockout)

The matches of the Final Phase that end in a draw will be decided directly by penalty kicks according to FIFA rules. There will be no extra time. 


7.- Number of Players and Substitutes

11 a-side Football

A team can register a maximum of 20 players and a maximum of 3 staff members on every match. Substitutions can be rotatives, which means that a player can get back in the field after being substituted. The substitutions must be made in three times maximum per team apart from in the halftime, and the moment when the opposing team asks for its substitutions can also be used. In any situation, a team can have an extra moment for an additional substitution, for the fact of for example, of having an injured player if the three substitution times have been already used. All the substitutions must be made from the centre of the field, requesting authorization to the referee and when the game is stopped.

8 a-side Football

16 players can play and a maximum of 3 delegates can be registered in every match in the categories B12, B11, B10, G12 and G10. A maximum of 6 substitutions, including the one of the goalkeeper, are allowed. A substituted player may re-enter at the match all the times wanted. All substitutions must be made from the centre of the field, requesting authorization to the referee and once the game is stopped.

8.- Minutes

All minutes of the tournament will be on the computer (on-line). For this purpose, the delegates of the teams must provide to the members of the organization in the field, the OFFICIAL ROSTER OF DONOSTI CUP with the corresponding t-shirt number of each player half an hour before the match saying head players and subs. It will be mandatory to know before the match the players and the coaches that will be on the field. It will be also advisable to the responsible of the teams, to check the result and the cards with the field staff.

9.- Clothing

All shirts will be numbered and must correspond to the ones in players' list. Numbers must be on the back of the shirts. In case of similarity of t-shirts, visitor players should change their shirt. (The visitor team is the one appearing last in the program). The colours of the teams can be checked on the website. If the coincidence of colours persisted, the organisation will give bibs of a different colour. The visitor team should wear the bibs.

10.- Football fields

There are artificial turf fields and natural grass ones. It is forbidden to play with aluminium shoes at artificial turf fields, shoes have to be of rubber.

11.- Punctuality

Match timetables will be strictly respected. Teams must be ready 15 min before the kick-off of the game. If this does not happen and the organisation understood that there is no reason that justifies that failure to appear, the game may be declared lost to the offending team by 3 – 0. The decision will be always taken by the Competition Comitee. The 11 a side and 8 a side breaks will last 4 minutes. All the breaks have to be made at the fields.

5 minutes before the beginning of each game, both teams will be ready at the field access tunnel to enter behind the referee of the game. Once the referee makes a signal, the teams will enter in two lines after him and before chosing the side of the field they will do two lines looking to the stands and they will do a sports greeting.

12.-Penalties-disciplinary rules

Any player sent off with a direct red card will be suspended for one or more matches or sent off for the rest of the competition (depending on the seriousness of the suspension). Any player accumulating 3 warnings (yellow cards) during the tournament will be suspended for the next match. The cards will be accumulated throughout the whole tournament and will not be cleared for the next round of the tournament. Only if the player gets to the Champions league or the Play Off B final, the accumulated up to three yellow cards will be pardoned, except for those players who got a red card that will keep the suspension even at the finals.

The player having a suspension of one or more games will not be able to play any game in any category until fulfilling the suspension in the category where he is registered. Even if the disciplinary foul cause of the sanction occurs in a game of a different category to the one where the player is registered.


If a team had 6 players or less, the match would be abandoned and the result will be decided by the committee of competition of the tournament.


If a team had 5 players or less, the match would be abandoned and the result will be decided by the committee of competition of the tournament.

Fair play

In case of draw and as the 4th criteria to be classified, the accumulation of cards will have a negative value to be classified (Fair Play), having the value of 1 point per yellow card, 2 points per double yellow card and 3 points per direct red card. The addition of these points will be made only and exclusively by the sanction reports of the organisation. This classification will be on the website of the tournament.

Any team showing bad behaviour during the competition (wrong protests to referees’ decisions, arguments with other teams responsible and the staff of the tournament specially, etc) could be automatically sent off. All the serious expulsions will be reported to the National Federation of the country of the affected player.

In the case of a violent attitude of players belonging to the Guipuzkoa federation, these situations will be reported to the federation giving names and family names of the players involved. This federation could put any penalty.

Delegates are responsible of their player’s behaviour and attitude towards referees, team partners, opponents, spectators, organization and the facilities where matches will be played (changing rooms, benches, paying grounds…)

The organisation will check the changing rooms before and after each game with the delegates’ team to certify that those changing rooms are used in a correct way. At the same time, this person will sign that in case of any damage of the benches, changing rooms or field, the delegate, the team and the person making these damages will be the responsible of them.

The teams that demonstrate a passive attitude in the matches and are left to win, lose the games to be classified for the Europe League will be expelled from the tournament.


13.- Registration of players and technical staff

Players of the same club playing in different categories

Each player, even if he/she is playing in more than one category, he/she has to be registered only in one of them, always fulfilling the age requirements of the article 3 for that category.

To play in a second team (always from the same club) the coach will have to show the “List of players” where this player has to be registered before the beginning of the match –and following the instructions of the article n. 7 of the rules- and enter the player at the match official form.

At any moment, a player can play in another team of the same club and of the same category where he/she is registered.

14.- Referees

All tournament matches will be leaded by official referees from "Colegio Gipuzkoano de Árbitros" and official referees from different countries. The referee and the staff will be the highest authority in the field and both will be able to stop or suspend the match if they detect any non-sportive attitude in one or both teams or wrong behaviour or attitude in the public that may interfere in the correct development of the game and of the tournament. Not only the final result of the game, but also the disciplinary resolution of the facts will be a task of the Competition Committee.

15.- Protests

All protests must be given to the staff in the field written by the team manager not later than 60 minutes after the match is finished. Any protest will not be taken after that period of time. A protest fee of 50 Euros will be paid at that time moment when it is given to the staff in the field. This fee will be refunded if the protest is approved. All the protests will be determined by the Competition Committe and the resolution will be translated to the responsible of the involved teams by the Sports Direction of the tournament. The tournament committee will not accept as complaint  protests regarding decisions taken by the referees.

16.- Competition committee

The competition committee is an independent establishment to the Sport Direction of the Tournament. They discuss about all the important things happened during the day, adopting the necessary disciplinary decisions. All the decisions will be published on the website of the Tournament. The most serious or urgent penalties may be announced to the responsible of the concerned teams by the Sports Direction of the Tournament. The decisions cannot be appealed, all participants must accept them.

17.- Playing program

The organising committee hast the right to change the groups, times and fields. This information will be given to all the team delegates. All these changes will be on the website and this will be the official way the organization will use to inform the teams.

17.- Balls

All matches of 11-a-side are played using size 5 PUMAS balls. In 8-a-side games size 4 PUMAS balls will be used.

The organisation won't leave balls for trainings before the matches, so each team must bring their own balls for their warm-up exercises. 

18.- Insurances

The Donosti Cup has an accident insurance contracted with the company Mapfre. In case of serious injury, the participant will be transferred by ambulance to the two clinics (Policlínica Gipuzkoa and Hospital Quiron) or to any of the Mapfre centers.

Official sponsors

LaLiga Puma Real Sociedad El Diario Vasco Coca Cola Carza

Official collaborators

Orona Donostia Turismo Teledeporte Ausolan Ficoba Equinoccio Insalus ABS ILUMINACION

Institutional partners

Donostiako Udala Around Gipuzkoa Gipuzkoa kirola Euskadi Basque Country