NISA Introduces a Fast Break for Ramadan Observers

Apr 11, 2023

CHICAGO (April 11, 2023) – NISA is pleased to announce the immediate addition of a fast break for observers of Ramadan for the 2023 Season which will remain in-place for future years during the month of Ramadan.

This policy has been formally adopted by USSF for the 2023 Lamar Hunt U. S. Open Cup and the National Independent Soccer Association follows suit. The league has already instituted the fast break policy this past weekend in the 4/8/23 Savannah Clovers FC v. Gold Star FC Detroit match.

This year Ramadan is being observed from March 22 to April 20, 2023.

This will be implemented in a similar manner to a hydration break with some additional coordination and communication required as noted below.

1. Both clubs competing should determine if any of their players participating in the match are fasting prior to arriving to the venue/stadium.

2. Upon arrival to the venue/stadium, if a club has any players who are fasting, they should immediately report this to the home club’s Referee Liaison and referee crew.

A. Clubs should indicate the players who are in the starting line-up who are fasting.

B. The referee crew should indicate to the Referee Liaison if one of the referees is also fasting.

C. If a substitute player who is fasting enters the match prior to the designated fast break time, club officials must notify the fourth official at the time of the substitution that a fast break will now be required.

D. If there are no participants fasting, the match should proceed as usual without a fast break.

3. The Home Club’s Referee Liaison will confirm with the individuals fasting the appropriate time of day/estimated time during the game at the match venue/stadium (sundown) for the break.

4. Similar to how a referee would implement a hydration break, the fast break should commence following the first natural stoppage of the match after the pre-determined time for the break.

A. This break should only happen if the individual(s) fasting are actively participating in the match (not substitutes on the bench, etc.)

B. All players participating in the match can take a hydration/nutrition break at the same time as a fast break.

5. The time will be made-up though added time in the respective half of play. The referee and Referee Liaison should make note of the fast break in the Match Report following the game.



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