The English Premier League, La Liga, Serie A–you name it–all have one thing in common: the large, green field marked with white lines. Soccer is the most popular sport globally, with some 4 billion fans. And since it’s such a widespread game, there are fields everywhere; in parks, backyards, and local schools.
Soccer fields are green, level, and well-maintained at all times to keep players at their top performance while reducing the risk of injury. Also, soccer fields are occasionally sprayed with water to help the ball slide smoothly across the surface and help the player get a firmer grounding.
If you’re new to soccer or know someone is starting out with a new team, this article details some interesting facts about soccer fields that might help your understanding of the game.
Why Are Soccer Fields Different Shades of Green?
Soccer fields are different shades of green because of the way the grass is cut. A grass leaf has two sides; the glossy, bright side that reflects a pleasing bright green color under the sun, and a darker, underneath side.
You may be tempted to think the different colors on the field mean that there are two breeds of grass that are far from the truth.
The light and dark shades are achieved by bending the grass in different directions. The mowers achieve the striped effect by bending the grass leaves.
As light from the sun strikes either side of the grass, it is reflected either as a bright green color or a darker green color.
While this striped appearance serves no value to the player, it creates a stunning view of the pitch for the audience.
Does a Soccer Field Have To Be Green?
Every soccer field has to be green, according to the International Football Association Board (IFAB), the body that sets the rules and regulations of soccer. However, you may see soccer fields that are different types of green, as there isn’t an official shade of green for a soccer pitch.
To understand why soccer fields have different shades of green, we need to look at the different types of grass they use for playing surfaces (more on that later). There are natural grass fields where the grass has been planted specifically for soccer games and allows the ball to roll and move quickly between players.
There are also artificial turf fields, which are made from a variety of materials and designed to mimic natural grass but with their own particular set of advantages. And finally, there is the indoor turf, which is unsurprisingly primarily suitable for indoor play – the grass in indoor soccer fields will typically not see much sunlight or rain and therefore won’t behave much like natural grass.
What Kind of Grass Is Used in Soccer Fields?
The entire soccer field surface must be wholly natural, according to the International Football Association Board (IFAB). Artificial and hybrid fields (a hybrid system that combines both natural and artificial grass) are also acceptable if the competition rules state so.
Ryegrass is the most commonly used on soccer fields. Ryegrass is a fast-growing type of grass that withstands various weather conditions throughout the year. Although natural grass fields are the most preferred for soccer fields, maintaining them can be pretty difficult.
What Is the Best Kind of Grass for Soccer Fields?
There is no perfect type of grass for soccer fields. They all have their advantages and disadvantages. One of the most significant factors in choosing the right kind of grass is the climate where it will be used. You want to make sure the grass can withstand any weather conditions that the area may get.
Kentucky Bluegrass, ryegrass, and tall fescue are the best kinds of grass for soccer fields in cooler climates. Smooth stalked meadow grass is also suitable for its tolerance to wear and tear. Tropical grass species such as bermudagrass and seashore paspalum are best for fields in warmer climates.
What Is the Type of Grass at Old Trafford?
The home of Manchester United FC is one of the most iconic stadiums in the world.
Old Trafford stadium has the Desso Hybrid grass, which is essentially a combination of natural grass and artificial turf. Artificial grass fibers are injected 20 cm (7.87 in) deep into the natural grass about 20 cm (7.87 in) deep and tangle with the natural grass roots as it grows.
A lot of care goes into grass care. For instance, the grass is checked for the shortage of nutrients and micronutrients. On top of that, liquid garlic is frequently used to keep harmful pests away.
Do Soccer Fields Have Turf or Real Grass?
Most competitive and recreational soccer fields have a combination of turf and natural grass. Given that it is difficult to maintain natural grass, especially in climates that are difficult to predict, top stadiums use a hybrid system (a combination of natural grass and artificial turf).
Are Premier League Pitches 100% Grass?
All the intense rivalries and spectacular goals by players happen on hybrid fields, i.e., fields made with real grass mixed with artificial turf. Natural grass happens to be the most widely used in Europe.
But, to keep it in great condition, most stadiums inject artificial grass fibers to reinforce the natural grass and improve drainage.
What Do the Lines on the Soccer Field Mean?
The Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA), the international governing body for football, dictates that soccer fields should be rectangular. Clear, white lines run along the field, and each line has its purpose on the field.
The lines on the soccer field can be touchlines, halfway lines, goal lines, center circles, or corner arcs. Each of these types of lines has a different purpose, and some may be crossed while others must be avoided.
Here’s a brief overview of the lines that run along the soccer field and what they mean:
- Touchlines. These lines run on the longest sides of the field. A throw-in is awarded when the ball goes out of play through these lines.
- A halfway line runs through the center of the field, touching both touchlines. This line slits the field into two for both teams.
- The goal line touches the goalpost and extends to the corner of the field. When the ball crosses this line, it’s a goal for the team that scored.
- The center circle. This is where the game kicks off.
- The corner arc is a quarter circle with a 1-yard (0.91 m) radius that is painted on each of the four corners of the field. The ball must be within this arc when a player takes the corner kick.
Other lines mark the goal area and the penalty area. The lines on the soccer fields are marked using special liquid white marking paint that is not easily away by rain or during the game.
Read more about soccer field lines and specifications in this article: Law 1 The Field of Play.
How Much Does It Cost To Rent a Soccer Field?
The cost of renting a field varies. Fields can be rented for a day or a year. They can be rented by the hour, month, or through schools and soccer leagues. All in all, the cost of renting a field can depend on where it is located, the season, and if it is being used for games or practice.
Soccer fields can be used for many things, such as holding conferences for schools, events, or private games. So, how much does it actually cost to rent a soccer field?
Renting a soccer field can cost anywhere between $85/hr or $450 a day. These numbers are based on the National Sports Center rates. In other places, the costs for renting fields can range from $300 to $500 per day.
Keep in mind that different owners and management companies charge differently and include different rules about their rental contracts, so make sure to reach out to any soccer field you’re interested in renting when coming up with a budget.
Whether you’re new to the sport or just want to brush up on your knowledge, we hope that these few exciting facts will get you started. Soccer is an interesting sport with adoring fans all over the world, and there are so many cool facts about soccer fields that will make your games even more exciting.
- Ezine Articles: Interesting Facts About Soccer Fields
- Football Stadiums: What Type Of Grass Is Used On Football Pitches?
- Soccer Prime: Soccer Field Dimensions
- The IFAB: LAW 1 THE FIELD OF PLAY
- Proctors: Which grass species are best for sports pitches?
- Rookie Road: Soccer Pitch Lines
- Explain Soccer: Are Soccer Fields Made of Natural Grass?
- Backyard Sidekick: Soccer Field Size, Layout, and Dimensions
- National Sports Center: Indoor and Outdoor Field Rental
- Soccer Blade: Best Grass for Soccer Field (Make A Pro Field)
- World Atlas: The Most Popular Sports In The World