Halftime is the interval between two halves of a match and starts on the 45th minute or after stoppage time at the end of the first half. This period lasts a maximum of 15 minutes from when the referee stopped the match. In special circumstances, only the referee can change this time.
The team’s change ends before the start of the second half to negate any advantage the other team might have enjoyed in the first half in terms of wind direction, the slope of the field, or supporter advantage. The match is restarted from the center spot with a kick-off for the second half.
What are the advantages of Halftime in Soccer?
Halftime is essentially a 15-minute break and allows teams to leave the pitch. In this period the teams will look to do a number of things depending on how the match is going.
Most importantly halftime is a chance for both teams to rest and recover for the second half, using the time to sit, drink and relax in the dressing room. During this time players may also receive treatment for any minor injuries they have picked up in the first half. If the player’s injuries are deemed to be serious the manager will make a substitute before the match restarts.
Managers and coaches often use halftime to reinforce or change the tactics their team started the match with. This can be crucial as when the match is in play it is difficult to get any messages to the players due to stadium noise or distance from the team.
It is often the case that one team can be dominant after the first half is finished either by score-line or controlling possession. Halftime gives the opposing team the chance to regroup and try to fix the problems on the pitch.