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Soccer Rules Changes 1580-2000

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Question Number: 30286

Law 16 - Goal Kick 4/14/2016

RE: Adult

Sean of Birmingham, Warwickshire United Kingdom asks...

When the ball goes out on the left hand side of the goal AFTER contact with a defending player last a corner is awarded, the corner is then taken on the left hand side of the pitch (as the attacking team play) When the ball goes out on the left hand side of the goal AFTER contact with an attacker a goal kick is awarded, the goal keep may take this kick from either his right hand side or his left hand side of his six yard box, why is this? a corner cannot change the side it went out of play on but a goalkeeper is allowed to?

Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Sean
For those of us around long enough in the game a goal kick had to be taken from the side it went out on . The law makers decided to change that with the kick now being allowed to take place from any side. Reasons cited including speeding up the restart and allowing the kicker discretion on side. Unfortunately with many law changes some have abused the discretion by in fact wasting time by moving to the other side. If I detect that the GK is doing this to delay the restart he is spoken to or cautioned. If the GK has taken every single kick from say the right side I will not intervene if he continues with that.

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Answer provided by Referee Jason Wright

Hi Sean,
Look at it this way - there are 2 corner arcs (on each side of the field), but only one Goal Area (in the centre of the field). And the LOTG only stipulate that a goal kick is taken from the Goal Area - otherwise, the field markings would be different (perhaps with an arc on each corner of the goal area). Imagine having to enforce the 'side it came from' on a goal kick. The problems would arise when players want to put it into the middle.
Also, there's much more difference between one corner and another than there is between one side of the GA and another.
As Ref McHugh states, sometimes a keeper will start to stroll across to the far side of the Goal Area to take the kick to run down the clock. Referees should be aware of such delaying tactics and can certainly issue a caution for delaying the restart of play.

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