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The rewrite of the LOTG are coming into effect soon. Consider this question in light of those changes and answer accordingly as if they are in effect!

It is a blowy rainy day. The Blue #1 striker back heels the ball at kick off and runs forward into the red half, the ball travels towards a teammate at the edge of the blue penalty arc. Red is puzzled but the referee does nothing so all ten red players move up into the blue half l several surround the blue player with the ball who had fallen but had got up & is juggling the ball. As the nearest red players seek to challenge he boots the ball up field at the mid line but a bit shy and towards the touchline. Our blue #1 striker runs over to get to the clearance closely followed by the nearest red player, they arrive about the same time! Trying get to the ball they collide and both slide completely off the FOP. The ball remains just inside the FOP just inside the blue half right tight to the touchline but our red player reaches over and pulls the shirt of the blue player, jerking him back so he can get to the ball first. Your call is ? Your Match Your Decision Your reputation.

Our Answer
I apologise for the confusion , this question was a bit iffy as it related to LOTG not yet implemented. Still for those who reread and realized the differences well done!

Some of the new LOTG are easily grasped and readily acceptable. I think we are all glad the kick off can go backwards with minimal fuss now.
The offside is a POSSIBILITY given the initial centre forward movement still we are not given information to suggest there was no further the movement after the ball was passed back and before it was kicked forward by the defender. Consider there was time to MOVE about the ball did not come forward immediately!
If as some assumed the striker remained in the opposition half then yes the offside indfk is awarded inside his own half where he interfered with the opponent. The whistle or flag should have been sounded / popped to avoid the contact! An issue that perplexes some is where should the AR be in pointing out the location for this type of offside ( IF there was) and indicating the spot for the INDFK to be awarded. The indfk restart location of course is a new wrinkle perhaps fodder for a pregame talk but I still maintain the AR remain affixed to his normal position with perhaps a over and back hand wave and verbalize the restart location.

If the striker was smart enough to return to his own half prior to his team mate last touching the ball then there was no offside and we must deal with the actions after the players exited the FOP. As some responders have astutely gleaned, the new portion allowing us to consider off field actions as on field fouls at the point to the nearest boundary line. Cards might be considered for misconduct, especially if, the offside was in fact a reality, but as in every situation with possible use of cards your match your decision your reputation will have a bearing on the game necessity or need to do so. To award a DFK on the touchline for the holding

Your answers
Jack Smith New South Wales Australia Referee
The kick-off is taken correctly, as the ball no longer must move forwards. On p. 65 of the 2016/17 FIFA Laws of the Game: "For every kick-off: • all players must be in their own half of the field of play • the opponents of the team taking the kick-off must be at least 9.15 m (10 yds) from the ball until it is in play • the ball must be stationary on the centre mark • the referee gives a signal • the ball is in play when it is kicked and clearly moves • a goal may be scored directly against the opponents from the kick-off" NB. there is no longer a reference to the ball moving forwards. A direct free kick is awarded to the blue team due to the holding foul committed by red. Previously fouls could only occur on the field of play, so this offence would have been punished with a dropped ball and caution for unsporting behaviour. On p. 89 of the 2016/17 FIFA Laws of the Game: "... if a player leaves the field of play as part of play and commits an offence against another player, play is restarted with a free kick taken on the boundary line nearest to where the offence occurred; for direct free kick offences a penalty kick is awarded if this is within the offender’s penalty area" Note that a caution is not necessary for this offence. In prior editions of the Laws, it stated that "There are different circumstances when a player must be cautioned for unsporting behaviour, e.g. if a player: .... holds an opponent for the tactical purpose of pulling the opponent away from the ball or preventing the opponent from getting to the ball". However, this clause no longer appears in the list of offences that constitute unsporting behaviour. The red player should now only be cautioned if this holding breaks up a promising attack

Matt Bristow VA USA Referee
I've already answered this question, but did not catch the mention of the rule changes. Since they clearly indicate that the kick off was legal, the ball has been legally put into play and therefore, my original answer is incorrect. I'll address thing chronologically: 1) The ball is legally put into play. 2) Blue #1 runs forward 3) All red players except the goalie (ok, except one probably the goalie) move forward. This puts Blue #1 in an offside position. 4) Blue player falls, stands up and juggles ball. 5) Blue passes the ball forward. 6) Blue #1 runs toward the ball that was played by his teammate. Per #3, he was in an offside position. 7) Blue #1 and Red player collide and slide off the field. The specific section of the offside law which would apply is somewhat unclear, but it is clear that Blue #1 is guilty at this point of an offside violation. He has either challenged for the ball or prevented his opponent from challenging for the ball. 8) Referee blows whistle and signals for a red IFK. 9) Red player from off the pitch holds/pushes blue player. The question states that his actions "jerk" the blue player back. The language to me certainly indicates recklessness and may indicate excessive force. Since play was already stopped for the offside and the violation occurred outside the field of play, it is not a foul and has no bearing on the restart. 10) Referee runs to the area to try to prevent any further escalation. 11) After blowing the whistle and telling red to wait for a whistle for the restart, referee issues red or yellow to the red player. 12) As it is near the touchline and midfield, it may be possible to communicate with coaches. Regardless, I would explain to captains if possible. Referee indicates that the initial violation was for offside and therefore the restart is an IFK for red. Red players misconduct does not constitute a foul as it occurred off the field of play and while the ball was out of play due to the offside; however the conduct was reckless or excessive and therefore was misconduct that warranted a card. 13) Referee immediately assumes position for the IFK restart and blows whistle to restart play. His timely action and confident manner indicate that he is not willing to dispute the situation and help to diminish dissent. 14) Play continues and the assessor gives the referee a superior grade for game management. 15) The referee goes on to center the World Cup final in 2026 and during the press surrounding the game gives credit to 'ASKTHEREF.COM' without whose help the referee would not have flourished.

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