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Question Number: 14622

Law 8 - Start and Restart of Play 12/21/2006

RE: rec Adult

alex of richmond hill, on canada asks...

This question is a follow up to question 14606

An interesting point about starting the kick off with a minimum 7 players. However, law 8 states "all players are in their own half of the field", meaning the ref cannot restart the game unless all celebrating players returns to their own half.

I guess the only option for the ref against celebrating players not returning to their own half is using the yellow card for either delaying the restart of the game or leaving the field of play without the permission of the referee.

Answer provided by Referee Richard Dawson

It is an interesting thought and likely a better idea than trying to prove a point by restarting with less than the number of players allowed because they are taking too long. It just seems to me that offering 4 cautions rather than restarting might make a greater impact with less fanfare. I admittedly have restarted the 2nd half with players still mucking about the touchline area and players slowly walking into positions in tournaments where time is a legitimate factor and no added time allowed. Coaches that like to push referee buttons needlessly and a referee with a chip on the shoulder can make for unpleasant conditions. Note though I stated there had to be no opponents inside the other's half so likely celebrating is not within that area but off the FOP! While we have regulations in the league that state if there are 7 players present the game must be started on time! I tend to agree with you it would be setting a bad taste and if any thing resulted could develop into a protestable situation! Mind you 4 sets of double yellows delay the restart and usb for taunting I could claim they were sent off ! LOL!. Cheers

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Answer provided by Referee Ben Mueller

I heard a story about referee restaring play when the entire team was off in a corner on the wrong side celebrating the goal including the keeper. This referee however blew the whistle for the hlf to end before the team could score off of the goal. Needless to say he was wrong in that the law states each play must be on defending half. He did make a strong point to the coach of the team though and from now on they returned to the correct side after scoring a goal.

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Answer provided by Referee Mike Gartenhaus

As the other panelists have said, the referee in this case was wrong.
If you watch any professional games on television, after a goal is scored and the players are celebrating (many times off of the field) the Referee and any Assistant Referee that is close are next to them telling them to hurry up, finish the celebration and to get back to their end. Then if they do not, a yellow card to one of them can get some quick action, but may not be necessary if you are close and letting them know clearly that they must get back.
By the way, in my experience, when I have seen referees pull the "whistle before they are ready" thing, they are some of the older, more "experienced" referees.
Thanks for writing.

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