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It is a careless foul by #12 blue on #17 red. who stumbles then recovers, it looks like he is free to continue up the touchline as referee you are thinking advantage when #17 spots a team mate in the clear and passes the ball, unfortunately the player receiving this pass is offside.
Your Match. Your Decision. Your Reputation . Your Call is?

First off a hearty congratulations to those with the courage to broker an answer.

Phil Tarzana
Restart with a DFK from the location of the foul. There are a few issues here, as the facts are a little vague. I will assume that this was in the attacking 3rd & not in the penalty area, where it is advised NOT to signal advantage. 1. Is "your thinking advantage" the same as playing advantage? i.e. was there an advantage? 2. How much time elapsed before the attacker passed the ball to his teammate? 3. Did the attacker squander the advantage by a deliberate pass to a teammate? A referee always makes a decision before signaling that decision. So it is possible that the referee is applying advantage, even though he has yet to signal it. If 5 or so seconds had passed & #17 decided to pass to a teammate in an offside position, while he is running up the touchline, then he has squandered his advantage. The foul would have had no affect on his decision to pass. That, however, doesn't appear to be the case. Advice to referees, p. 16 §5.6, mentions one of the factors considered in applying advantage is: "Potential – this clear possession of the ball enables the fouled team to continue an immediate and dangerous attack on the goal despite the foul. Note that this attack must not necessarily be defined only in terms of scoring a goal." Continuing up the touchline without being able to cross to a teammate who is not offside, does not appear to be "an immediate and dangerous attack on the goal". Although it "looks like he is free to continue up the touchline", that isn't what happened. It's quite possible that #17, whose momentum up the touchline was unfairly interrupted, quickly got rid of the ball. I say "quickly" because the question says "you are thinking advantage when #17...passes the ball". Law 5, Powers & Duties of the Referee, states: "allows play to continue when the team against which an offence has been committed will benefit from such an advantage and penalises the original offence if the anticipated advantage does not ensue at that time". There is no advantage in passing the ball to an offside teammate. In fact, of the 4 core elements of advantage (possession, potential, personnel, proximity), only the first seems to be met. Therefore, I would whistle to stop play & indicate a DFK where the foul occurred.

Patrick Little
No advantage ensued. Call the foul and restart with the DFK at the spot of the original foul. Law 5 - The referee allows play to continue when the team against which an offense has been committed will benefit from such an advantage and penalizes the original offense if the anticipated advantage does not ensue at that time

Alan Siegel
Signal and say "Advantage" as the offside positioned teammate may decide to not play the ball. But, once the offside positioned teammate does become involved in active play by playing the ball, blow the whistle and award a direct free kick to the red team from the location of the careless foul. Explain to the players that advantage was not possible because the teammate was in an offside position. From the LOTG Law 5 - The Referee - Powers and Duties: "The Referee...allows play to continue when the team against which an offence has been committed will benefit from such an advantage and penalises the original offence if the anticipated advantage does not ensue at that time" In this case, the advantage did not ensue since the receiving teammate would be sanctioned for being offside per Law 11.


The only recourse here is to award the 1st foul!

WHY? you ask?

The advantage criteria is NOT met!

WHAT???? you ask?

Some of you are no doubt ready to take issue that it was the player's fault for HIS decision. To say that he had his advantage and he squandered it,! This is not the case! In keeping with the spirit of the laws or fair play I encourage you to rethink your position if you feel, a true advantage was in fact realized and that a poor decision by the player rendered the foul obsolete ! There is a vast difference between a possible opportunity and an advantage realized!

The point is we are not concerned with HIS decision, we are MORE concerned with your, the referee's decision!

Read the question carefully again, the referee is ...thinking... hey this looks possible for him to keep going? Perhaps I can let the foul go, oh no he has passed the ball to an offside attacker. What shall I do now?

There was NO announcement (ADVANTAGE!) no signal( arms are out sweeping gesture) but even IF that WAS the case the referee has not yet decided to yell out PLAY ON! This was the referee looking over the situation and determining if the actual FOUL should go unpunished . Once a referee is satisfied that a CLEAR advantage was in fact obtained, resulting in a much better or equal scoring or great attacking opportunity to the free kick being passed up, only then, has he no reason to go back to a foul that occurred a few seconds earlier.

Examine what the procedure for demonstrating advantage is and process it's metamorphosis from the moment when you as referee.
The opposition has cheated and tried an unfair act to stop the opponent !
It was Careless! Not reckless, not excessive, so no card, only a DFK
However, the offended player fights to regain his balance and reacquires the ball.
It looks possible that this UNFAIR act has failed.
It looks like he could advance up the touchline and possibly later get in a good cross or seek to take the ball in himself .
Instead he sends off a pass towards a team mate, the AR flags as offside . Unfortunately the advantage is now terminated.

Many responders were adamant this must be an INDFK to the defenders for a bad decision by the attacker who could have done better!
Why are so many bent on punishing the attacker yet feel the ...FOUL... is just another burden that player had to bear before he gifted the ball back?

The circumstances are not hazy, the referee was... thinking... about the advantage OBVIOUSLY as referee we have not decided the advantage was completed .

The player could be nursing a sore leg or winded, hence his decision to push the ball forward instead.
Still none of that truly factors into OUR decision.
The FOUL is lingering in the mindset more so now that the advantage is not possible. I ask you ," Where is this immediate, promising attack?" I see no benefit from gifting ball possession for an offside infraction?

• allows play to continue when the team against which an offence has been
committed will ...BENIFIT... from such an advantage and penalises the original
offence if the ...ANTICIPATED... advantage does not ensue at that time.
I ask what is the anticipated advantage? That he could keep dribbling?

Advantage is balanced against a number of factors.
Does not the severity of a foul outweigh the loss of possession?
Was there a credible and dangerous attacking play, not mere possession or a possible down the field moment?

In this scenario, no advantage was realized, this is well within the timing and essential fairness parameters to determine the 1st foul takes precedent over the 2nd infraction of offside.
To do otherwise
Your Decision! Your Match! Your Reputation!

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