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Question Number: 30671

Kicks From The Penalty mark 8/14/2016

RE: Competitive Adult

Jack of Sydney, NSW Australia asks...

In the 2016/17 LOTG, it states that:

'The penalty kick is completed when the ball stops moving, goes out of play or the
referee stops play for any infringement of the Laws.'

It seems to me that this no longer prevents an attacker from playing a rebound off the goalkeeper when the match is extended for a penalty kick to be taken or at kicks from the penalty mark. Previously the kick was over when the referee decided it was complete ie. there was discretion.

Why isn't the wording something like:
'The penalty kick is completed when the ball stops moving, goes out of play, **touches a player other than the goalkeeper**, or the
referee stops play for any infringement of the Laws.'

Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Jack
The Laws have always required an element of tacit knowledge. The written Laws are not a legal document as if they were the lawbook would run to tomes in which every single consideration would be spelt out. We also know from experience that the wordsmiths in IFAB have in the past worded certain laws poorly and if taken literally could be interpreted differently from what is understood / expected. The wording that you highlight could be one such example. One that was always highlighted was the wording of a sending off where it did not actually spell out that the player could take no further part in the game! It did at one time and then it was removed probably because the writers assumed the *sure everyone knows that* approach. So we all knew that yet it did not say it explicitly in the later laws books after 1997. The glossary now covers it. Also try to make sense of the wording of Law 11 where it stated that a player had to be in active play (by playing the ball or challenging an opponent) at the same time that a team-mate played the ball to him! We know what is meant just that it is not expressed very well written down.
So I can assure you that there is no follow up on a rebound on Kick from the Penalty Mark even if it does not explicitly say it. It's one of those *we all know that* decisions.

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Answer provided by Referee James Sowa


This seems like poor word choice by writers of the new LOTG. Why they did not choose something along the lines of: 'the forward momentum of the ball is spent' or 'at the discretion of the referee' we will never know but as Referee McHugh points out, this is one of those cases where 'everyone knows' you can't shoot the ball again.

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