Soccer Referee Resources
Ask a Question
Recent Questions

Previous You-Call-It's

VAR (Video Assistant Referee)

Q&A Quick Search
The Field of Play
The Ball
The Players
The Players Equipment
The Referee
The Other Match Officials
The Duration of the Match
The Start and Restart of Play
The Ball In and Out of Play
Determining the Outcome of a Match
Fouls and Misconduct
Free Kicks
Penalty kick
Throw In
Goal Kick
Corner Kick

Common Sense
Kicks - Penalty Mark
The Technical Area
The Fourth Official
Attitude and Control
League Specific
High School

Common Acronyms
Meet The Ref
Contact AskTheRef
Help Wanted
About AskTheRef

Soccer Rules Changes 1580-2000

Panel Login

Question Number: 33788

Law 12 - Fouls and Misconduct 11/27/2019

RE: Rec Adult

Russell of Sydney, Australia asks...

This question is a follow up to question 33787

Ref Dawson mentioned '...a handling foul if it was being flipped about away from the body...' with regard to a jersey sleeve.

Can he please clarify how a loose jersey sleeve could create a 'Handling' foul.

Would it be if the other hand was holding the loose sleeve (and was flipping it about) and it made contact with the ball, in the same way that a foul would be called if you were to be holding an object and the object makes contact with the ball.

Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Russell
As you know referees give what they see. If a referees sees an arm raised towards the ball making contact then a handling decision will be made. Would the referee know the extent of a players arm inside a sleeve in these type of cases?
As I said these are outlier situations and what looks like a flapping sleeve is not going to be called as handling once the referee is certain it was not not deliberate and that an arm is not used.

Read other questions answered by Referee Joe McHugh

View Referee Joe McHugh profile

Answer provided by Referee Richard Dawson

HI Russell,
I look at it in the same way as a padded cast makes an arm even MORE susceptible. A LONG loose flapping shirt sleeve is an extension of that arm . It would count as a touch for possession or possible offside restrictions or a ball headed into touch for throw or a corner , thus handling is a possibility. I do not think the other hand should figure into it. Those with handicaps like to be treated as normal as possible. I think it is why asking the flapping material be contained is a fair compromise! Think too, what part of the arm is missing, tight to shoulder, just above or below the elbow, the wrist ? I have had players pull their arms up inside their jerseys or sleeves in wet or cold weather and the ends of the sleeves are counted as part of those disappearing arms. Same as if they use the jersey to carry a ball by folding the ball into it! Although I have stopped matches and reminded coaches to dress their players warmer. While there are matches entirely comprised of handicap individuals, many are determined to compete if they are able with everyone else. We should try to make that plausible when ever possible!

Read other questions answered by Referee Richard Dawson

View Referee Richard Dawson profile

Ask a Follow Up Question to Q# 33788
Read other Q & A regarding Law 12 - Fouls and Misconduct

Soccer Referee Extras

Did you Ask the Ref? Find your answer here.

Enter Question Number

If you received a response regarding a submitted question enter your question number above to find the answer

Offside Question?

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

This web site and the answers to these questions are not sanctioned by or affiliated with any governing body of soccer. The free opinions expressed on this site should not be considered official interpretations of the Laws of the Game and are merely opinions of AskTheRef and our panel members. If you need an official ruling you should contact your state or local representative through your club or league. On AskTheRef your questions are answered by a panel of licensed referees. See Meet The Ref for details about our panel members. While there is no charge for asking the questions, donation to maintain the site are welcomed! <>