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Soccer Rules Changes 1580-2000

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Question Number: 35468

Mechanics 4/24/2024

Crebs Crem of Zagreb, Croatia asks...


In the following case, how shall the play restart?

Attacking player is being tackled by a defender in the penalty area, the ball goes out for a throw in but after the ball goes out, the referee blows his/her whistle for a penalty kick. The VAR intervenes and show the referee the defender actually played the ball, not the attacker. After the review, the referee cancels the penalty kick. At this point, how should the play restart, with a throw in or a dropped ball where the defender played the ball?

Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Crebs
Thanks for the question.

VAR mechanics will take over here in that the referee should not allow play to restart at the throw in. Play will be held up and then when the referee is satisfied that there was no offence play will commence with the throw in.

Now should the referee have halted play to award the penalty kick and it is shown that there was no penalty kick offence the restart is a dropped ball to the goalkeeper as play was stopped inside the penalty area.

If the referee allow plays to continue to when the ball goes out of play which in your case is a throw in that is the restart.

That rarely happens now with VAR as if a referee is not 100%, play is generally allowed to continue until the next natural stoppage or into a neutral zone.

One rarely sees penalty kick overturns due to the way mechanics are now managed in games. They do happen and it is the unseen action that gets it overturned. A recent example was a penalty award in the Everton / Liverpool game and a caution which was completely overturned when it was shown that the Everton attacker was offside. The restart was the IDFK for the offside and the caution to the goalkeeper rescinded.

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Answer provided by Referee Jason Wright

Hi Crebs,

Because the ball was out of play when the VAR check occurred, if the penalty isn't awarded in the end, then play resumes with the throw in as it would have anyway.

Ultimately, the ref initially awarding the PK has no impact on the game, as this occurred when the ball was already out of play.

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Answer provided by Referee Richard Dawson

Hi Crebs,
if a referee STOPS play with the whistle to indicate a PK and before that whistle occurs the ball is out of play across into touch for the throw in. We are in PK mode! The VAR intervenes and the review shows the referee in error. As the ball had exited the FO into touch prior to the PK being whistled and there was NO PK to award I would suggest restarting with a throw in as that is how play would have ended up. Given the defenders put the ball into touch, it seems only fair the opposition get the throw in as opposed to a DB to the defending keeper after being hopeful of a PK to losing ball possession now they have nothing to show for the effort? lol

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