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Soccer Rules Changes 1580-2000

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Question Number: 34613

Law 11 - Offside 6/3/2022

RE: Rec Under 18

Anthony of London, United Kingdom asks...

Hi all,

My question concerns the offside rule.
After a failed attack, a goalkeeper receives the ball and attackers leave the penalty area to return on their positions. If the goalkeeper releases the ball, it leaves the penalty area, but accidentally touches the attacker who is moving away but is still in the offside position, is it considered an offside?

Answer provided by Referee Richard Dawson

Hi Anthony,
there is NO offside offense!
The defenders have last played the ball resetting any restricted opposing PIOP! !

The keeper has deliberately played that ball AFTER the save. So if he NOW releases the ball AFTER he has controlled and received the ball, be that release was involuntarily or voluntarily but poorly, too bad for him. The attacker can play, shoot and score with no restrictions his position on the FOP is not relevant .

ONLY if a keeper was to make a deliberate save and that ball deflected or rebounded off of the keeper because it was difficult to control could a PIOP be held accountable for gaining an advantage.

It is unlikely but if a keeper was to parry the ball and knock it down when he could have easily caught it that is also considered control and voluntarily released thus resetting any PIOP restriction and placing the ball back into play.

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Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Anthony
Thanks for the question.
As described this is not offside. The moment the goalkeeper gained control of the ball then whatever offside consideration had passed so play continues.

A player cannot be offside from a deliberate play by an opponent so in this instance the goalkeeper has played the ball erroneously to an opponent which cannot be offside even if the opponent is clearly in an offside position. A player can only be offside from a ball played / touched by a team mate which as described did not happen.

Now one concern I have is how close was the attacker to the goalkeeper and did the attacker do anything that would hinder the release of the ball by the goalkeeper. While not an offside offence it is a Law 12 offence to prevent the release of the ball by a goalkeeper when the goalkeeper is in the process of releasing it. That can include running / moving into the path of the ball which is being kicked or thrown and the restart is also an indirect free kick,

Have a look at this example
The scorer Benzema is clearly in an offside position yet the ball comes from Karius on the throw so offside could not apply. The referee opined that nothing Benzema did interfered with the release of the ball which I believe was correct. It was simply a judgement error by the goalkeeper rather than the attacker interfering with the release. One can see that Benzema was a couple of yards away from the goalkeeper and the ball had been fully released.
Put Benzema closer to the goalkeeper at the throw and it is interfering with release.

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Offside Question?

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

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