Soccer is a beloved sport enjoyed by millions of people worldwide, but many newcomers to the game often have questions about how it’s played, including how long a soccer game lasts. While the answer may seem simple at first glance, it’s essential to understand the various factors that contribute to the length of a soccer game. In this article, we’ll provide a comprehensive guide to soccer game time, including how stoppage time works, how games can go into extra time, and more.
Understanding the Basic Length of a Soccer Game
Factors that Contribute to Overall Game Length
- Stoppage time due to injuries, goal celebrations, and other interruptions
- Goal kick delays
- Additional time due to VAR (Video Assistant Referee) intervention
How Long Does a Soccer Game Really Last?
While the official time of a game is 90 minutes, including a halftime break, soccer games can take longer to complete due to the various delays. On average, a soccer game can last around 2 hours.
What is Stoppage Time and How Does It Work?
Why is Stoppage Time Used in Soccer Games?
Stoppage time is used in soccer games to ensure that a fair amount of playing time is added after any delays caused by injuries, substitutions, goal celebrations, and other interruptions during play. It aims to prevent teams from wasting time to gain an unfair advantage and keeping the game flowing smoothly.
How is Stoppage Time Calculated in Soccer Games?
Stoppage time is calculated by the referee at his discretion. He may add additional time for extended or frequent stoppages caused by injury, goal celebrations, player substitutions, and other interruptions.
How Do Extra Time and Penalties Work in Soccer Games?
In knockout matches, extra time and penalties may be needed to determine a winner if the game ends in a tie.
What is Extra Time?
Extra time is a period of 30 minutes, split into two 15-minute halves, added at the end of a knockout game (such as the World Cup final) that ends as a draw during the official time.
What Happens During Penalty Shootouts?
If no winner is determined after extra time, the game goes into a penalty-kick shootout. Each team takes five penalties each, and the team with more goals at the end wins. Sudden death applies if both teams score the same number of goals; each team then takes a penalty each until a clear winner emerges.
Q1. How long is the regular time in a soccer game?
The regular time in a soccer game is 90 minutes.
Q2. What is stoppage time in soccer games?
Stoppage time refers to additional minutes added at the end of each half of a soccer game to account for delays and interruptions such as injury time, goal celebrations, and substitutes.
Q3. How long does a soccer game last on average?
On average, a soccer game lasts around 2 hours given the official 90-minute duration plus stoppages.
Q4. Do soccer games always end in a draw?
No, soccer games can end with a clear winner. In knockout games, extra time and penalties may be used to decide a winner if the game is tied.
Q5. What happens during a penalty shoot-out?
During a penalty shootout, both teams take five penalties each, and the team with the most goals at the end is the winner. If the score is tied, sudden death applies until a clear winner emerges.