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Question Number: 34323

Law 12 - Fouls and Misconduct 8/29/2021

RE: competive Other

EL Yasa Gherri of tripoli, libya Libya asks...

This question is a follow up to question 62

the ball with an opponent when I tried to kick the ball before I reach the ball he put his leg to protect the ball so my foot hit his instead - is this a foul against me , didn't meant to hit the leg but when he felt that I will be able to reach the ball he puts his leg to stop me reaching the ball

Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Thanks for the question
As described this would be a foul against you for kicking an opponent during play. You might not have meant it yet it was a careless action in challenging for the ball.

In the recent Women’s Olympic game semi final between Canada and US this happened

The defender tries to kick the ball with her left leg and ends up kicking the attacker on her right leg, bringing her to ground. When reviewed using VAR a penalty kick was awarded.

As a final point there can be situations where there can be a foul before the kick such as an illegal charge or push making contact with the kicker before his attempt to kick or where the player has simply placed a leg in a way that is intended to impede, trip the kicking action of an opponent rather than playing or shielding the ball. The player in those situations has committed the first offence and gets kicked during that illegal action. In some cases there will be a fine line between both actions and it is a judgement call for the referee to decide who was at fault. Generally when a player has possession / control of the ball within playing distance the onus on the opponent not to be careless in any challenge.

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Answer provided by Referee Richard Dawson

Hi there,
for the most part, you are not to kick an opponent when trying for the ball, HOWEVER, I have witnessed an opponent in screening the ball actually move their leg to block the incoming leg of the defender. in effect drawing a foul by intercepting the leg swing that would have cleared the ball. While my colleague shows you a good view of a foul due to pressure by an attacker against the defender let me show you one where an attacker is the one doing the foul by using their leg to block the defender's sweep of the ball
The first part shows the example I refer to.

The KEY in foul recognition is
A) be in a good position to see it
(B) understand what it is you are looking at!
(C) accept the referees' opinion even if you think him or her wrong!
lol chances are to argue gets you cautioned.

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