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Soccer Rules Changes 1580-2000

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Question Number: 35197

Other 11/4/2023

RE: Rec Adult

Reza Nazari of pleasanton, california usa asks...

This question is a follow up to question 35194

Thank you for your input and wisdom.
I don't feel this was in anyway reckless by me.. We stopped the game and I helped him and apologies all around. I got the ball and got passed him. as I slowed down to pull the trigger he, it gave him enough time to catch up a little .
I did not see him coming until contact was made. he stuck his leg out from behind me. until that moment I was in full control of the ball. I feel he was late. I'm play a little aggressive but he is far more aggressive than I am.
I just feel bad he got hurt

Answer provided by Referee Richard Dawson

Hi Reza,
thanks for the input and kind words.
when we pontificate on assumptions, we try to cover a wide range of what ifs? We rarely attribute blame, especially on the unseen events. We are aware that the game is viewed differently by those watching, playing or officiating. I personally sense you are a sincere and true person who is upset that it occurred and wished it had not. Chances are you are less upset than the dude with the busted leg as it will be inconvenient for at least a while but I have no doubt he also realizes he bears the responsibility for the nature of his tackle.

People need to realize that soccer is a contact physical sport, perhaps not in the same sense as rugby or pointy ball football but you have opposing forces arriving to challenge for that same ball at the same time The physical mass of those players and the speed they travel often in opposing or unseen directions almost any collision will have a dramatic effect as physics has the irresistible momentum hitting the unmovable object.

I refereed an inter city high school seniors match that had a smattering of the younger high school kids mixed in, talented, BUT size difference was very noticeable . On a straight up 50/50 ball I had the left foot of a grade 12 and on the other side was a right leg foot of a much younger, slighter player. They both had excellent position in blocking out the other unfortunate the size and weight proved the smaller lads undoing. As we all heard the audible thump of the feet on each side of the ball .

The tall 200 lb 6 foot grade 12 with a slight beard stood and watched as the other 5 foot 120 lb fellow flipped up into the air completely 360 with another 180 who landed on his back on top of the ball, looking like a bent pretzel to which a loud CRACKING sound echoed over the pitch followed by the child's wail of pain.

I was hitting the whistle, already shouting to the touchline to call 911 as the poor lad was bounced up off the ball after it compressed and then flopped over laying in an agonizing heap nursing THANKFULLY a broken arm NOT his back. I swear, I though that he broke his back given how he was wrapped around that ball, yoga instructors could not duplicate that position but it looked far worse than the outcome, which even so, was a sad one.

The grade 12 kid was crying that he was sorry, he did not mean too. I assured him he did nothing wrong! There was NO foul, just a picture perfect reason why YOUTH should be divided into like size age groups as the range of physicality in teenagers is very dramatic. The big lad was most upset and you could see he did not relish going n hard on the opposition after suffering that spectacle.

I talked to him after the match, "While it was an ugly incident your being aggressive first to the ball mentality needs to recover. You did not go in carelessly ,recklessly or excessively with studs up screaming like a banshee to intimidate, you went in with the sole purpose to win the ball, using a very solid technique where the ball is trapped between foot or your body so they cannot dribble it by. THAT laddy, is what the game is about. Do not get gun-shy because of an accident. You will play at a decent level and those opposing players will be every bit as hard nosed as you, do not expect them to back off. No one should ever play to hurt another but if you develop a fear that you could be hurt or you might hurt another , it could affect your ability to play competitively. .

I hope the referee reassured you there was no foul just an unfortunate coming together . Keep playing as long as the body allows it. It is a great game , just remember, as we age, it gives us a bit more wear and tear, so be careful out there!

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Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Reza
The game is a contact sport and accidents happen.
All that matters is that your conscience is clear in that you simply went to kick the ball and an opponents leg got in the way of that kick at the last moment.
The player will recover and I suspect wont be putting himself at risk in future games in such situations plus you both may be less aggressive in play going forward.

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