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Soccer Rules Changes 1580-2000

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Question Number: 35488

Law 17 - The Corner Kick 5/3/2024

Edson of San Jose, California United States asks...

What is the proper restart when a player takes a quick corner kick but at the last moment before the player touches the ball the Assistant Referee on the side where the corner kick is taken notices that the ball is not in the corner arc. Then, what is the restart if after the ball is played, the AR raises his flag but the center referee doesn’t stop play and a goal is scored. Then the center notices the flag before he awards the goal.

Answer provided by Referee Richard Dawson

Hi Edson,
The simple answer is a retake, as the ball was NOT put into play correctly. If a goal results and only then the AR notifies the CR, hey the restart was incorrect because the ball was NOT within the arc (even a tiny overlap of curve on the line itself is sufficient) the CR and AR should be in eye contact and sync when it comes to restarts & waving flags should be noticed. The fact is, UNTIL the kick off, the referee can alter awarding the goal as NO restart had occurred since the ball was improperly put into play. If a kick off ensued and only then the AR says, oh by the way that corner kick was not correct, it is TOO late to do or change anything! Best situation is to communicate, get the restart right!

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Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Edson
The simple answer is a retake as the corner was not taken correctly as per Law 17 even if a goal is scored.
A double touch or handling offence will obviously result in a free kick.
Now good mechanics by the assistant should try to ensure the kick is taken correctly which can mean stepping in to advise the kicker that the ball is not say in the arc and by doing so stopping the kick.
In addition alertness by the referee should spot the raised flag which means that the referee should endeavor to halt play immediately.

Now it also brings in the question of doubtful and trifling. We regularly see balls being placed on the edge of the arc many times ever so slightly beyond the line on the non assistant side. Play never gets halted on that side whereas on the assistant side an AR may step into to check the ball placement.
As an AR if I have failed to act and the placement is trifling or doubtful then why create an issue for the game unlike say a more obvious infringement such as a double touch or a moving ball which may be seen by the opponents.

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