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Soccer Rules Changes 1580-2000

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Question Number: 33937

Law 14 - The Penalty kick 5/19/2020

RE: Rec Adult

Russell Montgomery of Sydney, Australia asks...

Bayern's Robert Lewandowski's converted penalty in the recently resumed Bundesliga match against Union Berlin looked to be coming close to 'feinting' in the approach to the shot.
Might be technically within the LOTG, but I question it is within what the spirit of the law is trying to address.

Answer provided by Referee Peter Grove

Hi Russell,
As my colleagues have pointed out, Lewandowski's penalty was perfectly legal.

The only thing the law says is not allowed, is:

''feinting to kick the ball once the kicker has completed the run-up ...''

Lewandowski did not do this, so the penalty was OK under the law. The law also points out that:

''feinting in the run-up is permitted''

The intent of the law was to stop the 'paradinha' - a ploy where the kicker stops after having totally completed their run-up, waits for the keeper to dive and then, with the keeper already lying helplessly on the ground, rolls the ball into the empty net without taking any further steps. Again, that's not Lewandowski did.

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Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Russell
Great to have some games back
As to the letter and the spirit of the Law feinting is allowed so as Lewandowski did not stop at any time then the penalty kick was perfectly legal and both legal and within the spirit. In fact the goalkeeper had a good chance to save it.
Ask yourself this question? Would it have deserved a yellow card and an IDFK to the defending team?
Have a look at this penalty kick
This is the action that the game wants to eliminate. No comparison really with the Lewandowski one. As that video was dated the Law was not specific enough at the time to prevent it. It happened frequently in South America whereas in Europe and elsewhere that would have been disallowed under the spirit of the Law. It is now illegal under the letter of the Law.

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Answer provided by Referee Jason Wright

Hi Russell,
Feinting is permitted during the runup - it's when it occurs at the end of the runup that it becomes illegal (p123).
I don't like it, but that might just be me being a bit old fashioned with penalty kicks.
I think the law is mainly trying to stop attackers running up, feinting to make the keeper move, then taking the kick after this. Feinting mid runup doesn't do that - it's just to put the keeper off.

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