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Question Number: 29695

Law 16 - Goal Kick 9/13/2015

RE: Competitive Under 11

Rob of denvile, New Jersey USA asks...

On a goal kick. Can a defender stand in the penalty area?
How many defenders can stand in the penalty area on goal kicks?

Answer provided by Referee Richard Dawson

Hi Rob
on a goal kick or on... ANY... defending free kick DFK or INDFK coming from inside their own penalty area ALL your players can be there inside your PA.. It is ONLY the opposition that can not! Plus the opposition must still abide by the minimum ten yards as required by law.
The ball is NOT in play though until it completely leaves the PA
though ! So your players can not touch the ball until it exits!
I know that opposition youth players will gather in a strangling ring around the PA if there is no one strong enough to kick it well out into the field to take advantage of a mistake

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Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Rob
The requirement to leave the penalty area only applies to attackers. Defender/s can remain inside the penalty area however they are restricted from touching the ball until it has left the penalty area.
At an extreme the whole team could be in the penalty area for a goal kick!!

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