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Question Number: 21661

Law 11 - Offside 7/17/2009

RE: Comptetive Under 19

Ken of Geneva, NY 14456 asks...

We had a situation at a U18 game recently with a odd situation occured. On an indirect kick from midfield, team A(offense) kicked the ball towards team B (defense) and Team B player went to head the ball but instead of heading towards team A goal he headed it towaards his own goal. No offside flag yet . Team A kicks into team b goal. Ref calls a goal and the linesman calls offside(real late)Even though they were not offside and the explanation I got was the ball was never in possesion of team B so it is still part of the indirect kick. Is this the correct ruling or does team B have to take possesion for any action to occur?

Answer provided by Referee Michelle Maloney

There are some pertinent facts missing from your scenario. First of all, we have to know where the Team A player who kicked the ball into the goal was located at the time the IDFK was taken.

The questions regarding facts of play the referee had to answer as she watched play were:
1) were there any players in an offside position when the ball was kicked?
2) was the play on the ball by the defender on Team B a controlled play or simply a misplay?

If there were player(s) in an OSP when the kick was taken, then the referee must decide whether the play by the defender was a controlled play - meaning the defender had time and space to make a possession type play on the ball - or did the defender just misplay the ball because he was being interfered with by a Team A player?

If the referee decides the play by the defender was a deliberate, controlled possession of the ball, then the OSP player can safely play the ball and score because the ball was possessed and controlled by the defender. It is possible the defender was trying to get the ball into his goalkeeper's hands and simply miscalculated. His bad. Team A cannot be called for offside if the ball comes to him from a controlled possession from the defender.

If, on the other hand, the defender never had a real shot at the header, due to position or distraction or whatever, causing the ball to go where he didn't mean for it to go, then he never controlled and possessed the ball.

If the referee decides the defender misplayed the ball, and the Team A player(s) was offside positioned when they received the ball and kicked it, then Team A was offside, no goal and IDFK out for the defense where Team A player was located at the time the IDFK by his team was taken.

If Team A was in an onside position when the IDFK was made, it doesn't matter what the defender did or didn't do - goal, and kickoff for Team B.

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Answer provided by Referee Steve Montanino

If the the team A player was in an offside position at the time of the initial kick and the team B player did not control the ball when he headed it (sounds like a misplayed ball here, so control isn't likely) then the AR was correct that this was offside. If the team B player who headed the ball backward actually controlled the ball then the flag should have stayed down.

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Answer provided by Referee Keith Contarino

If the player in question was in offside position when the IDFK as taken. we may possibly have an offside infraction. This is going to center around whether the referee felt the header constituted control by the opponents. If control did exist , good goal. If control did not exist then offside, no goal.

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