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Question Number: 35222

Law 12 - Fouls and Misconduct 11/12/2023

RE: Amateur Adult

Jim Shaw of Belfast, N Ireland asks...

This question is a follow up to question 98548

10th minute of match, forward and defender tussle for ball in corner, defender comes away with ball and passes to teammate at edge of penalty/area. Forward shouts “REF URE A STUPID F C !. I stop play and issue a red card. I restart play were ball was with a free kick to defending team,. In after match debrief with Assessor he informs me that I was wrong to start match with a free kick but it shuda been a “drop ball to non-offending team”. In reply I said that I believe he is wrong brought in a couple of years back.
Can you say who was correct and what should be right decision

Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Jim
Thanks for the question.
The assessor is incorrect and your restart was totally correct in Law with the exception that it should have been from where the offence occurred not the location of the ball. Maybe not much distance between them but it’s important to be precise in Law.
Law 12 states it in clear black and white and I quote
**12.2 An indirect free kick is awarded if a player:
# plays in a dangerous manner
# impedes the progress of an opponent without any contact being made
# is guilty of dissent, using offensive, insulting or abusive language and/or action(s) or other verbal offences.**

Its been that way for a very long time. Going way to 1988 this is what Law 12 stated
** A player shall be sent off the field of play, if, in the opinion of the Referee, he is guilty of
(n) violent conduct or serious foul play
(o) uses foul or abusive language
(p) persists in misconduct after having received a caution.
If play be stopped by reason of a player being ordered from the field for an offence without a separate breach of the Law having been committed, the game shall be resumed by an indirect free-kick awarded to the opposing side from the place where the infringement occurred, subject to the over- riding conditions imposed in Law XIII.**

So nothing has changed in 35 years on that one just roman numericals lol !!

So the assessor needs to be put right. Its an IDFK from where the offence took place and that also includes dissent cautions. That is an important Law 12 consideration as let’s say the verbals / dissent was inside the offenders penalty area. Is the defending goalkeeper going to get the ball at a dropped ball which is required in Law? Of course not so it has to be an attacking IDFK and all that entails.

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Answer provided by Referee Jason Wright

Hi Jim,

Thanks for your question.

Echoing Ref McHugh, the assessor was incorrect here - which is a bit of a concern from an assessor!

There isn't any wriggle room on interpretation here - the LOTG are black and white.

Stopping play was correct - however, you did make one error: The restart is where the offence occurred, not where the ball was.

Aside from that, well done for stopping play and taking the required action.

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