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Question Number: 32014

Law 11 - Offside 11/11/2017

Zluvka of Liberec, Czech Republic Czech Republic asks...

This question is a follow up to question 31992

What do you think about concrete situation from Czech second league?

Player A took short corner kick, player B stopped this ball with sole (in this moment player A was in the offside position), player B stood on this ball with sole, player A ran to him, player B gave his sole from the ball (in this moment player A was not in the offside position) and player A passed into the penalty area. There were many opinions in the auditorium about the situation. (player stood on the ball maybe two seconds).

Question 1: Was it offside or not?
Question 2: Is the movement of the ball taken into account? (at the end of the situation when the player B takes his sole off) What if the ball does not move?

Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Zluvka
A player cannot be offside directly from a corner kick and direction or distance of the kick is irrelevant in offside.
The moment a player moves his foot off the ball is seen as the moment of the kick even if the ball does not move very far it at all.
In your scenario the receiver of the ball Player B from the corner kick by Player A was in my opinion in possession of the ball until he removed his foot from the ball at the last moment
So when Player B lifted his foot off the ball that was the moment of the kick for offside purposes and if Player A was in an onside position at that moment then there is no offside.
Now the challenge for an assistant looking across the field of play from some 50/60 yards through a group of players may not see the nuances of what is happening in the far corner. Does he think the ball has been controlled and left by B for A who may initially have comes from an offside position?
On my original answer I posted this video which showed an incorrect call
Here is another video
This is clearly offside as the kicker( A in your scenarios) was clearly in an offside position at the moment of the touch by the receiver (B in your scenarios).
Now had the receiver of the corner in this video held the ball up and removed his foot from the ball until the kicker was onside then there would be no offside.
Whatever happened in your scenario the offside was called/ not called depending on what was seen / not seen/ opined on the day. High level referees and assistant know Law 11 better than most. What is seen / unseen clearly affects offside calls.
I always tell players the decision is made and we get on with it. If offside is called then so be it. IDFK outbound to the defending team. If no offside then the game also continues and the defending team defends the kick.

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Answer provided by Referee Richard Dawson

HI Zluka,
just another silly wording of the LOTG. To think remaining in contact with the ball is the same as stopping it, THEN leaving, it is ridiculous.
Unnecessary confusion
Let put a REAL time situation and see if it passes the smell test.
Player A passes BALL while standing on the goal line from the arc ten yards up the touchline to Player B who stops the ball with the sole of his foot and remains there. At the time that Player B does this Player A remained on the goal line and there was no 2nd last opponent there so he is OFFSIDE positioned and restricted from play. NOW for whatever reason Player B remains there standing on this ball as Player A runs towards him. A the distance closes eventually Player A arrives and plays the ball from under Player B's foot.
Now lets take the same situation where Player B stops the ball but LEAVES it there and moves away NO Longer touching it . HERE I can see it as offside as Player A WAS on the goal line WHEN Player B received that ball and last touched it before moving away.
Can we TRULY buy into if Player B REMAINED with the ball continually touching it, this has the same outcome? In my humble opinion no, the LAST touch is when he releases his foot off the ball be it a sole roll or stomp or just lifting his foot off the ball THERE is no TIME delay on LAST touched or played it is or it is not!

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Answer provided by Referee Peter Grove

Hi Zluvka,
I think differences of opinion here may be based in part on the wording of IFAB circular 11 which states:

''When judging an offside position, the first point of contact of the 'play or touch' of the ball should be used.''

Now, I don't think that the ruling was made with this particular scenario in mind, I suspect it was intended to apply more to a normal kicking movement as in a pass or shot. When the play on the ball consists of leaving the foot stationary on top of the ball for a number of seconds, it would seem more logical to me to consider the potential offside position at the moment the foot was removed from the ball, rather than at the moment of the first point of contact. However the wording of the IFAB circular could be used to suggest otherwise so I can see the potential for confusion.

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Offside Question?

Offside Explained by Chuck Fleischer & Richard Dawson, Former & Current Editor of AskTheRef

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