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Question Number: 34906

Law 14 - The Penalty kick 3/8/2023

Petr of Prague, Czech Republic Czech Republic asks...


I'm suprisingly here again. Tuesday inspired me. We all know what I'm going to write about :-)

VAR handbook says this about penalty kicks:

Encroachment can only be reviewed if:

• an attacker who encroached scores or is directly involved in a goal being scored

• a defender who encroached prevents an attacker playing or being able to play the ball in a situation where a goal might be scored


Attacker A10 takes the penalty kick. Attacker A15 and defender B8 enter the penalty area prematurely. Goalkeeper B1 deflects this ball back into field of play. Defender B8 challenges attacker A15. Attacker A15 shots wide.

(encroaching defender challenges encroaching attacker, who shoots wide)

What will VAR say about it? Will VAR be silent or not?


Answer provided by Referee Richard Dawson

Hi Petr,
it is always good to hear from you my friend!

It always seems a bit of an injustice to allow a second chance to score when the 1st chance was so good, either resulting in a great save by the keeper or the kicker making a poor effort! Especially when the keeper was NOT responsible for any encroachment by illegal movement to narrow angles or space .

OBVIOUS encroachment by BOTH teams?
Technically a retake no matter the result, is the correct response!

Now encroachment by BOTH teams where it does not remotely affect play, a grassroots referee likely goes with the result but if they see obvious interaction then possible retake!

OBVIOUS encroachment by defenders and the attackers miss, the defenders are just begging the referee to award the attackers a 2nd go. Scoring a goal on the pk of course would stand.

OBVIOUS encroachment by the attackers, and the attackers miss it stays a miss . If the attackers were to score? No goal & retake is most likely!

So in your PK scenario
Attackers miss PK, get rebound, miss a 2nd time, then a retake due to VAR intervention pointing out? Just seems unnecessary.

Perhaps a more attentive referee blows or AR signals to stop play once they witnessed two opposing encroaching players vying for ball control after the initial miss and retakes without VAR intervention

The 1st PK miss results in a rebound or save!
Both defender and attacker are obviously there way too early to play that ball .
To be fair what defender is not going to chase an attacker into the PA??
Simultaneous encroachment is actually rare.

Given the attacker was ahead of defender VAR goes' Shhh. Goal kick out No one complains The trouble showing repetitive replays where the incursions are painfully obvious creates retakes when perhaps just leave it alone would be better!


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Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Petr
Thanks for the question
The answer lies in Law 14 where it says that if both teams infringe the LotG the kick is retaken unless a player commits a more serious offence (e.g. ‘illegal’ feinting).

As stated in the VAR protocol the VAR official will inform the referee of a matter of fact which is encroachment at the moment of the kick by both players. I don't think that VAR can be silent on the matter as it will be seen by a large audience through TV coverage and as it is a listed as reviewable then that is what will happen.
As it is a matter of fact resulting in the ball being played by an attacker along with a challenge from an opponent who also encroached it will not be seen as doubtful or trifling or something that can be ignored such as in other encroachment that has no impact on play.

As described the correct decision is a retake.

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Answer provided by Referee Peter Grove

Hi Petr,
As my colleague ref McHugh points out, this one is fairly clearly dealt with in Law 14. Players from both teams have encroached, in a manner which the VAR protocol says can be reviewed by VAR. So the VAR will not stay silent on this, they will inform the referee who will have the penalty retaken.

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