Law 2 – the ball

Qualities and measurements

The ball is:

  • Spherical
  • Made of leather or other suitable material
  • Of a circumference of not more than 70 cm (28 ins) and not less than 68 cm (27 ins)
  • Of a pressure equal to 0.6 – 1.1 atmosphere (600 – 1,100 g/cm2) at sea level (8.5 lbs/sq in – 15.6 lbs/sq in)

Replacement of a defective ball

If the ball bursts or becomes defective during the course of a match:

  • The match is stopped
  • The match is restarted by dropping the replacement ball at the place where the original ball became defective, unless play was stopped inside the goal area, in which case the referee drops the replacement ball on the goal area line parallel to the goal line at the point nearest to where the original ball was located when play was stopped

If the ball bursts or becomes defective during a penalty kick or during kicks from the penalty mark as it moves forward and before it touches any player or the crossbar or goalposts:

  • the penalty kick is retaken

If the ball bursts or becomes defective whilst not in play at a kick-off, goal kick, corner kick, free kick, penalty kick or throw-in:

  • the match is restarted accordingly

The ball may not be changed during the match without the authority of the referee.