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Soccer Rules Changes 1580-2000

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Question Number: 35097

Law 12 - Fouls and Misconduct 9/7/2023

RE: competitive High School

Robert N Fiorio of Schaumburg, IL United States asks...

restart on a player striking a teammate in their own penalty area while ball is in play

Answer provided by Referee Joe Manjone


In this case, play would be stopped. The player would be disqualified for violent play (NFHS Rule 12-9-2a). Since this is an offense that includes contact, the restart would be direct kick from the spot of the infraction for the opposing team. This is covered by NFHS Rule 12-1-3 which states: "If an offense involves contact, it is penalized by a Direct Free Kick" and NFHS Rule 132-2k which states: "If the game is stopped for misconduct of a player and no other restart takes precedence (12-9-1, 12-9-2, and 12-9-3). NFHS Rule 12-9-3 is a new rule in effect for the 23-24 high school year.

Hopefully, your boys high school season is going well and you will be one of the referees working one the Illinois state championship games televised on the NFHS Network in November.

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Answer provided by Referee Richard Dawson

Hi Robert,
the VC violent conduct of a team mate against another is certainly a horrible situation. Not ONLY the certainty of a red card send off for the one player and that team playing a man down there is also a possibly the response might be equal in its veracity. and both are sent off reducing them from 11 to 9 players.

The fact the opposition also GAINS a free kick INSIDE their opponents PA for no reason except the stupidly of misconduct by an obtuse player or players is a gift that just keeps on giving .

Especially since this new rule where the conduct against a TEAMMATE is a DFK offence not an INDFK for showing a card for misconduct as it is not classified as a foul. since no opponent is being harmed or challenged!

If it is a DFK offence under these new rules of highschool I must assume it is a PK opportunity not a INDFK messy shuffle in front of the goal as was once the .case!
Stupid actions result in stupid consquences!  

While referees should apply the Laws within the ‘spirit’ of the game to help
produce fair and safe matches sometimes we are forced to push that slightly in response to idiotic individual players who wind up punishing even their own team.
That the restart of play after fouls and misconduct
WHILE the ball is in play and a player commits a physical offence inside the field of
play against his own team-mate, substitute, substituted or sent-off player, team official or a
match official – a direct free kick from that point is the correct restart or if it occurs within their own PA (penalty area) then it is upgraded to a PK penalty kick

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