U.S. Youth Soccer is the largest league in the U.S. and follows the following structure (U6 is for 6 years old and younger):
A “full side” match consists of 11 players on each side including one goal keeper (GK).
Youth teams typically start with smaller sides and work up to larger formats.
Below is a brief description of common positions as shown in the image on the left. (Note: This is NOT a formation, positions 2 & 3 and 7 & 11 typically play the same position on opposite sides)
Formations are described by the number of positions in each line starting with the defensive line working towards offense; the goalie position is typically assumed.
The table below shows some of the most common formations where “D” indicates the line is in the shape of a diamond.