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Question Number: 30182

Law 16 - Goal Kick 3/7/2016

RE: High school Under 17

Jennifer of Angleton, Tx U.S. asks...

This question is a follow up to question 30040

Can a player kicking the goal kick place the ball on one side then pick it up and take it to the other side to kick the goal kick?

Answer provided by Referee Richard Dawson

Hi Jennifer,
It is rather an unorthodox and unnecessary action as it has the possibility to be viewed by the referee as a delaying the restart thus wasting time and thus cautionable show a yellow card! In fact, although I do not know USA high school it maybe illegal under NHSF rules to perform such an action as it WILL be viewed as such??

Under FIFA it is a discretionary call, a player can use up time legally but in situations where we are awaiting restarts it is expected the ball be put into play in a timely fashion. The time allotted to retrieve and set the ball down once is rather obvious but to try to razz-ale dazzle with hey we are feinting right but going left on a goal kick is really scurrilousness kind of like on throw ins when it gets retrieved by one, who tosses to one, then he waits tosses to another who then proceeds to take a throw in that could have occurred long ago.
My suggestion is do not do it, set it and pound it down field or pass to open defender.

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Answer provided by Referee Joe Manjone


Once the ball is placed for a goal kick, the ball cannot be moved from one spot to another. This is covered in 16.1.3 Situation on page 67 of the NFHS Rules Book. If this is done, a caution for unnecessary delay could be issued to the player that moved the ball.

I hope that your season is going well.

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Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Jennifer
When a referees sees this happening the first reaction is to question why and is it being done to delay the restart, use up time, an unnecessary delay. So it is never a smart idea by a goalkeeper to do this in any game. In NFHS the rule is spelt out as outlined by Referee Manjone while in FIFA it is less clearly defined. In NFHS games the caution is a significant decision in the game particularly for goalkeepers. So on your question the answer is no. Whether it is enforced universally and in all circumstances I would suspect not for various reasons. Players dont need to ask the question of the referee in a game as they might not like the answer.

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