What is Partially Sighted Football?
Football is exhilarating to watch and is one of the world’s most popular Para sports.
Under the governance and leadership of IBSA the sport is split into two: blind football and partially sighted football.
IBSA Partially Sighted Football is for players with less severe – although still acute – visual impairments who are classified as B2 and B3.
Partially Sighted football is an adapted version of Futsal and it is also sometimes known as B2/3 football.
Who can play?
Players who play partially sighted football will have some level of sight whilst blind footballers may have a small amount of light perception at best.
Goalkeepers can be fully or partially sighted.
Vision impairment arises for a variety of reasons - genetics, prenatal developmental issues, or from illness or trauma. Vision impairment occurs when there is damage to one or more of the components of the vision system, which can include:
- impairment of the eye structure/receptors
- impairment of the optic nerve/optic pathways
- impairment of the visual cortex
IBSA adaptations to the FIFA Futsal Laws
Outfield players must be B2/B3 (partially sighted) although the goalkeepers are sighted.
The goalkeepers must stay in the goal area and have a crucial role in communicating with the outfield players.
Some of the adaptations
- In competition, playing areas should be free of other markings
- Light must be of an equal intensity on all parts of the field of play and during the entire match
- The ball should be a colour that clearly contrasts from the pitch and lines
- The goalkeeper is not allowed to leave the penalty area if he/she is fully sighted
- Internationally a team shall never have more than two B3 players on the pitch when they play with a fully sighted goalkeeper.
- If the Goalkeeper throws or kicks the ball beyond the halfway line without it touching their half of the pitch or touching another player in their half, an indirect free-kick id awarded
The determination of visual class will be based upon the eye with better visual acuity, whilst wearing best optical correction using spectacles or contact lenses, and/or visual fields which include central and peripheral zones. Currently the classification structure is not yet sport specific. IBSA has funded several research projects to develop sport specific classification in the near future.
The current divisioning is:
- B2: Visual acuity ranging from LogMAR 1.5 to 2.6 (inclusive) and/or visual field constricted to a diameter of less than 10 degrees.
- B3: Visual acuity ranging from LogMAR 1.4 to 1.0 (inclusive) and/or visual field constricted to a diameter of less than 40 degrees.
The International Blind Sports Federation (IBSA) is the international federation governing the sports of Blind Football and Partially Sighted Football.