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Question Number: 26495

Law 12 - Fouls and Misconduct 6/25/2012

RE: Professional

Gail irving of Seattle, wa usa asks...

can an offensive player follow the ball into the goalbox after scoring a goal?

Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Gail
There is nothing wrong with this provided the player has not done so to provoke a confrontation with opponents by trying to recover the ball. The player can be in there through momentum, celebration and there is no offence.
The kick off restart will be taken by the opponents so the scoring player has no rights to the ball. If the ball is given up freely by the opponents then there is no problem for the referee.
Referees are always alert to confrontation between players after a goal when the scoring team wants to speed up the restart by retrieving the ball. When that confrontation starts the referee intervenes and the player can be cautioned.

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Answer provided by Referee Dennis Wickham


When a goal is scored, the ball belongs to the team that will be kicking off. While a member of the scoring team can still gather the ball, she must not become involved in any issues over possession of the ball with the opponents. If any confrontation occurs, the player on the scoring team will be cautioned for delaying the restart of play

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Answer provided by Referee Michelle Maloney

Not sure why they want to do that, but yes, they can. What they cannot do is provoke a confrontation with the opposing team, whose ball it now is. It would be a caution for delaying the restart of play if the team scoring the goal got into a tussle with the defending team for the ball.

The excuse that 'I just wanted to help get the game started faster!' or some version of that old saw is just that, an excuse. If time is an issue, that is for the referee to manage.

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