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Question Number: 32631

Law 18 - Common Sense 8/7/2018

RE: Rec Adult

russell of Sydney, Australia asks...

This question is a follow up to question 32625

Clearly I am in a debating mood !

Ref Dawson said 'Not a chance in hell would I bring back the blue goal for a 2 touch violation by the keeper.'

So if a double touch violation did occur, he is saying he is not going to call it because a goal ensure some 20 or so seconds later.

If a double touch did occur, then any play after this by the offending team is irrelevant no matter how amazing, spectacular, jaw dripping the play is thereafter.

I love Ref Dawson and read and re read his comments endlessly, but am surprised to read he will disregard a foul in favour of a goal that occurs after the foul.

Not sure how the opposing team would appreciate that.


It bugs me that we are disregarding a negative aspect of play (a possible double touch foul) in favour of a positive phase of play (a goal scored) because it might be deemed trivial.
I thought we are to treat all incidents on there own. If it is a foul, then no wizard thereafter can override it. If it is not a foul, ok, goal scored and keep going.
But to fob off a foul simply because it is considered trivial in relation to another ensuing passage of play seems against what this site is about. Is it trivial that the VAR system decided that there was reason to review a possible foul in what turned out to be a key match incident.
Is it trivial that the CR upon review called it back. That is not trivial - that is having the strength to say, hmm, maybe I got that wrong. Alternatively, the CR had the opportunity to have the strength to say, 'thanks for asking for the review, can understand there is some question there, however, I am comfortable there was no issue - goal stands'.
Neither of those two outcomes are trivial.

I understand the stance taken by the CR is not trivial, and that you are referring to the passage of play by the keeper as being trivial, but the two ultimately go hand-in-hand.

Again, I agree it is a pity to see a great bit of skill be chalked off due to a low level foul, but foul it was " as suggested by the VAR watching, and evidently agree too by the CR upon review.

Of course if the Blue shot was saved or missed, or there was a turn over long before any shot, then I would not be here debating this.

Love the site. Love you guys.

Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Russell
Let me pose this question. Say the GK held the ball for 12 seconds instead of 6 what would be the decision? Clear breach of the LotG or say that play continued for some 2 minutes of passing the ball around before the goal with possession lost / regained what would be the call?

The strap line for VAR says *minimum interference – maximum benefit*. The principle aim of *minimum interference – maximum benefit* is to avoid matches being constantly interrupted by reviews, but when they are clear errors in match changing situations are corrected.
The referee will follow the principles that a decision can only be changed if the footage shows a 'clear error' (or that a serious offence/incident has been missed) – the question is not *was the decision correct?* but *was the decision clearly wrong?*
So for me the decision to allow play to continue was not clearly wrong and as I said previously at worst doubtful.
For most of us without the use of VAR we would or not be awarding an IDFK here in real time. So we are saying not that fouls should be ignored because of what happened afterwards yet that reversing a play that happened at the other end of the field for a doubtful offence is not within the spirit of the game.

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Answer provided by Referee Richard Dawson

HI Russell ,
there is NO debate here, I see a clear foul I call it, always have, always will. No one can convince me the keeper committed a clear technical foul despite the actions of VAR or the CR changing his mind. In this case I do NOT SEE a clear must call technical violation foul thus I do NOT stop play, ever. No opponent was inconvenienced and as I said the AR looking in with no flag and the CR making no original call means it was the opinion of the VAR squad that this REQUIRED a review due to their belief it was a technical foul . I say this with great respect and understating, they were dead wrong, it was NOT in the best interest of the game. Given how the elite ignore countless acts of disrespect and failure to respect distance why this focus on a keeper releasing the ball into play given he is ALLOWED to bounce the ball and it was within the 6 seconds? Where does it say the bounces must be basketball style? Are we going to review if the keeper holds the ball longer than 6 seconds? THAT is an INDFK violation same as a double touch? A referee with integrity calls what he sees but apparently a referee with VAR calls what they want.

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Answer provided by Referee Peter Grove

Hi Russell, I think the point here is the principle of only allowing 'clear and obvious' errors to be reversed using VAR. As has been previously pointed out, it is debatable whether there was really an offence here. I think if I had seen this in real time I might have been tempted to call the 'double touch' violation but if I had not called it, I don't think it could be classed as a clear and obvious error that should be subject to VAR review.

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