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It is always fun to play the game solo (solitaire). In real soccer, it is kinda hard, but with Subbuteo, it is possible. Playing solo subbuteo is not for everybody but can be quite relaxing when there's nobody around to witness what you are doing. It is slow-paced so it enables the beginner to work on the tactics especially in defense. If you have ever tried to play Subbuteo on your own using rules that were meant for two players, it does not take long to realize that there is a need to bend the rules slightly to make the solo game enjoyable.

Solo Rules

The solo rules presented below are not endorsed by anybody important, just me. So use at your own risk!

Solo rule 1: No blocking during open play.

That's right, no defensive blocks are performed. However, if the usual rules say that a block flick is due, then it is due in the solo rules as well. If you play fast enough, it is actually not that easy to maintain possession, especially when you don't polish the players. This way of playing solo was pioneered by Bruno Biasini, a good friend of the Subbuteo technical page. If the idea of not blocking at all does not sound too appealing, you may want to restrict blocking to only when the ball is not in the shooting zone (in other words, block only when you are in shooting territory).

Solo rule 2: Goal-keepers are replaced by batteries.

You do not want to get too fancy here, so a C-battery or D-battery is used as a goalie, lying down. When a shot is about to be taken, you place the goal-keeper anywhere you want fully inside the 6-yard box. You obviously choose the position that protects the goal best depending on the ball and shooter's position. The goal-keeper should be positioned only when the ball has stopped moving. If the ball is moving, the goal-keeper should remain in its default position, that is, centered on the 6-yard line.

When the ball can be touched by the goal-keeper standing fully inside the 6-yard box, possession goes to the defending side. The spare goal-keeper should be used to kick the ball out.

If you want to give the home advantage to one of the two sides, the simplest way is to use a D-battery for the home side goal-keeper and a C-battery for the away side goal-keeper.