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Soccer Rules Changes 1580-2000

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Question Number: 27998

Other 11/13/2013

RE: Adult

Warren of Sydney, Australia asks...

This question is a follow up to question 25886

Hi Panel,

As you know, I really appreciate the great educational resource that your website is and all your efforts on the site.

I did however want to seek clarification for an answer to an old question (yep been reading through them oldies recently ! :-)

In Qtn 25886 Joe says 'When the ball is touched by a 2nd player at an IDFK the ball is then deemed to be in play. Even if that touch is illegal such as deliberate handling the ball is still in play.'

Can I suggest that you clarify the wording of this answer slightly so as to remove the ambiguity that seems to imply that the ball is only considered in play once another player touches it ? (the use of the word 'then').

Of course the ball is in play from an IFK 'when it is kicked and moves'. So perhaps it might be helpful to emphasise that while we keep our arm signal in the air until another player has touched the ball, or it has gone out of play, to indicate effectively that a goal cannot yet be scored, the ball is definitely in play whether or not that 2nd-player touch occurs or not.

It just seemed to me that an inexperienced ref might read the current answer and think that the ball was only in play *after* the 2nd touch.

Thanks again for all your efforts !

Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Warren
Anytime that there is possible ambiguity on an answer that is not helpful.
You are totally correct that the ball is in play when the ball is kicked and moved on any free kick.
As suggested by you I have clarified the wording in the answer.
A further thought about this is that had the player been successful in denying the goal with his deliberate handling he could not be sent off for denying an obvious goal as a goal could not be scored directly from the IDFK. Same would apply to a throw in. That though was not asked in the question.
Thank you for bringing this up which is appreciated.

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Answer provided by Referee Keith Contarino

Hello Warren. Thank you for the kind words. We all are appreciative when any of our answers are pointed out as being ambiguous which gives us a chance to clarify. Thanks again!

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