Soccer Referee Resources
Ask a Question
Recent Questions

RSS FEED Subscribe Now!

Q&A Quick Search
The Field of Play
The Ball
The Players
The Players Equipment
The Referee
The Other Match Officials
The Duration of the Match
The Start and Restart of Play
The Ball In and Out of Play
Fouls and Misconduct
Free Kicks
Penalty kick
Throw In
Goal Kick
Corner Kick

Common Sense
Kicks - Penalty Mark
The Technical Area
The Fourth Official
Attitude and Control
League Specific
High School

Common Acronyms
Meet The Ref
Contact AskTheRef
Help Wanted
About AskTheRef
Panel Login

Question Number: 25256

The Technical Area 7/26/2011

RE: rec, select Under 11

gord majic of hamilton, ontario canada asks...

do coaches have to coach players from there own side of half or can they move freely up and down the entire length of the field?

Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Gord
Coaches are restricted to the technical area if one exists. The technical area extends 1 m (1 yd) on either side of the designated
seated area and extends forward up to a distance of 1 m (1 yd) from the touch line. In the absence of a seating areas on some grounds there may be a competition rule which sets out where coaches and substitutes must remain during the duration of the game.
Either way if the referee believes that the coach is not acting in a responsible manner he can ask him to desist and if it continues he can remove him from the vicinity of the field of play. I personally don't have a problem with coaching. However once it includes getting involved with opponents and berating the referee that is not not acceptable behaviour and the coach can be removed.

Read other questions answered by Referee Joe McHugh

View Referee Joe McHugh profile

Answer provided by Referee Dennis Wickham

Coaches may not move up and down the touchline. They must remain in the 'technical area.'

In professional matches where both teams are on the same touchline, this rectangular area is usually marked on the field 1 yard back from the touchline, starting 5 yards from the halfway line, and extending 1 yard beyond the benches.

For youth matches, the technical area is rarely marked. When teams are on opposite touchlines, the tradition in my area is that the coaches must remain within the width of the center circle - - no further than 10 yards from the halfway line. USSF allows the referee to approximate a technical area within which substitutes and team officials must stay (and behave themselves).

Read other questions answered by Referee Dennis Wickham

View Referee Dennis Wickham profile

Answer provided by Referee Gary Voshol

It has been tradition in our area that coaches may roam the sideline 'from 18 to 18'. (Teams and their supporters each take one side of the field.) Some fields have a line painted outside the touchline, typically extending about 10 yards either side of the half line. When we were revising the local operating rules a few years back, I put in a provision that coaches must stay in their technical area where one was provided. We then instructed referees to interpret this auxiliary line as being the technical area, and that they could instruct coaches to stay in that area. Only if the coach is getting obnoxious with his movement and instructions would I make any issue of it.

Read other questions answered by Referee Gary Voshol

View Referee Gary Voshol profile

Answer provided by Referee Michelle Maloney

A coach who is roaming the entire touchline is more of an interference in the game than an assistance to his/her players. The time for coaching is practice, before the game and at halftime.

When the players are on the field, they should take what they know and try to apply it. When it doesn't work, or when it does, the coach can use these incidents to build on during his/her time.

If a technical area is provided or is indicated by the referee before the start of the match, the coaches and their staff and players are bound by the law to stay there. This area restriction exists for the safety of the players, the referees, the fans and the coach (believe it or not).

Read other questions answered by Referee Michelle Maloney

View Referee Michelle Maloney profile

Ask a Follow Up Question to Q# 25256
Read other Q & A regarding The Technical Area

Soccer Referee Extras

Did you Ask the Ref? Find your answer here.

Enter Question Number

If you received a response regarding a submitted question enter your question number above to find the answer

Offside Question?

Offside Explained by Chuck Fleischer & Richard Dawson, Former & Current Editor of AskTheRef

This web site and the answers to these questions are not sanctioned by or affiliated with any governing body of soccer. The opinions expressed on this site should not be considered official interpretations of the Laws of the Game and are merely opinions of AskTheRef and our panel members. If you need an official ruling you should contact your state or local representative through your club or league. On AskTheRef your questions are answered by a panel of licensed referees. See Meet The Ref for details about our panel members.