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Question Number: 30223

Law 16 - Goal Kick 3/27/2016

RE: Youth Under 13

Pete roberts of Chester, Uk asks...

This question is a follow up to question 29756

Referees in a few of our matches this season have made our keeper retake kick, a tactic I encourage boys to use is to take a quick goal kick to either left or right back to catch out opposition, the problem I'm having is sometimes defender is still in the pa when kick is taken but does not touch the ball until out of the area but he calls for a retake as players still in the area, I was under the impression the whole defending team could be in the pa, any thoughts

Answer provided by Referee Gary Voshol

I agree with my colleagues that the quick kick allowed by Law 13 should also apply to goal kicks. But I can see where others might disagree. As Ref McHugh noted, it is not specifically called out in Law 16. Perhaps it was thought that there wouldn't be any reason for opponents to be slow getting out of the penalty area, as the ball had to be retrieved from beyond the goal line and placed in the goal area for the kick. And Law 13 has other provisions for taking a quick kick when the kicking team chooses to do so.

Now all the above only applies to opponents. Your question asks about defenders. At the time of a goal kick, technically the kicking team are all the attackers and the opponents are all defenders. If you were speaking of defenders as field positions, e.g. right defense, left defense, then you're talking about teammates. Any and all teammates can be in the penalty area at a goal kick, they just can't play the ball until it exits the penalty area.

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Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Pete
The referees are interpreting Law 16 literally here and IMO by doing so are incorrect. A team is allowed to take a quick goal kick / free kick and as long as the kick itself is taken correctly that is placed inside the goal area / at the location of the offence and at rest play should be allowed to continue even if there are attackers inside the penalty area. It makes no difference if there are defenders inside the area as the whole team could be in there if it so choses. The restriction applies to attackers who according to the Law *opponents remain outside the penalty area until the ball is in play*. Defenders are however totally restricted, like the attackers, from touching the ball other than the original kicker until it leaves the penalty area.
What has been the experience on all quick restarts is that the opponents when noticing something unusual such as a ball not totally at rest will appeal for the restart to be taken again. Perhaps the referees see some attackers inside the penalty area as the reason for the retakes? It certainly cannot be defenders as how else could a defender take a goal kick?
Now the advice and interpretation in Law 13 is much clearer and tells us and I quote * If, when a free kick is taken by the defending team from inside its own penalty area, one or more opponents remain inside the penalty area because the defender decides to take the kick quickly and the opponents did not have time to leave the penalty area, the referee must allow play to continue.*
Established principles work across all the Laws so it is incongruous for it to apply to a quick free kick inside the penalty area yet not to a goal kick even if it is not expressly written in Law 16. Indeed the game encourages the game to be started quickly so as long as all the conditions of the restart are met then play should be allowed to continue.

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Answer provided by Referee MrRef

Hello Pete,
apparently these referees require a re-cert course on basic idiosyncrasies of the LOTG!

On any DEFENDING free kick including DFKs, (include the goal kick) and any INDFKs being taken from ANYWHERE within their own 18 yard Penalty Area (which includes the 6 yard Goal Area)
The ONLY requirement by the defending team is the ball must COMPLETELY leave their PA before any other defending player except the kicker (who is prohibited of a 2nd touch) can make physical contact with/touch the ball.
So no passing inside the PA is permitted. If there is a portion of law that a referee might forget it is that a defending free kick other than a goal kick must still exit the PA before it can be replayed!

The opposition must NOT enter the penalty area to chase the ball or cut off space while the ball is still inside travelling through the PA ! They are to remove themselves from the area prior to the kick being taken & must respect the 10 yard distance required under the LOTG for free kicks if the restart location was closer than ten yards to any perimeter of the PA boundary lines.
The referee can occasionally overlook the fact an opponent is inside the PA when a defender takes a free kick from within the PA due to the speed of play. These opponents are STILL bound by the LOTG to NOT interfere or play the ball until it has completely LEFT the confines of the PA.

NO matter the reason, if the ball is played by anyone of either team before the ball completely exits the PA the kick is ALWAYS retaken. The culprit disciplined IF required!
I also suggest that IF an opponent is entering the PA ahead of the ball exiting to say put pressure on the defending receiver or follow the flight path & it has a noticeable effect on play they be pulled up for their actions & the kick retaken. A referee, if he decides the cutting through action has negligible effect, he should still have a word with the culprit reminding him to stay out!

The NEED to caution, show a yellow card here is remote but on occasion could have merit!
A defender realizes a poorly taken kick, sees the ball headed to an opponent standing just outside the PA and chooses to intercept the ball before it exited -FORCING a retake has committed tactical misconduct. An opponent who is continually cutting off the corners trying to intercept after being warned not too finally does! Again only the most egregious actions require a harsh discipline usually a gentle reminder serves the need. Proactive is most often better than reactive!

I would pass this information to the referee assignor for your league so those referees who are currently unaware are made aware!

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