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Soccer Rules Changes 1580-2000

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Question Number: 30780

Law 13 - Free Kicks 9/18/2016

RE: Club/High School Under 16

Brian Winiarski of Wyckoff, NJ USA asks...

In today's game, we awarded an indirect free kick just outside the penalty area. Our player touched the ball, and another player shot and scored. The referee disallowed the goal saying that the interpretation of law 13 is that a player must make a 'deliberate kicking motion' when touching the ball for a teammate to shoot.
Correct? I can't find any interpretations substantiating this interpretation.

Answer provided by Referee Jason Wright

Hi Brian,
The law states that the ball is in play when it is kicked and clearly moves (and this has changed with the new laws with the addition of the word clearly).
Sometimes you see a situation when the first player taps the ball, but the ball hasn't moved. This means that this touch hasn't put the ball into play - so not only are the defenders still required to remain 10 yards away, but it's the next touch putting the ball into play. So if that 2nd attacker runs with the ball, it's an IFK for a double touch infringement.
There is some disagreement amongst referees about what 'moves' means. Some say it means the ball must roll, some (I think most) will accept a wobble on the spot. But the referee has to see the movement.

So if the first touch didn't put it into play in the referee's opinion and it went straight into goal without touching another play, it's a goal kick.

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Answer provided by Referee Peter Grove

Hi Brian,

If the first player merely touched the ball and did not make it clearly move then the referee was correct although not for the reason given. The law does not refer to a 'deliberate kicking motion' but it does say that the ball is only in play 'when it is kicked and clearly moves…'

This is a change from the old law which said merely that the ball had to move. In my opinion the intent of the law is that the ball must be clearly seen to move and a mere 'wobble' is no longer enough.

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