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Question Number: 26880

Law 10 - Method of Scoring 10/3/2012

RE: High School Under 16

Rob Doorack of Guilford, CT USA asks...

My question is inspired by an incident in one of my daughter's recent games. Her team's keeper caught a shot and was holding the ball with both hands against her chest while kneeling. An opposing player ran into the keeper and knocked her over. That offense is not what I'm questioning. Suppose the keeper had dived to the ground to avoid the incoming opponent and in doing so allowed the ball to cross the goal line. Would that count as an own goal? I've searched online but haven't been able to find anything definitive about whether the ball goes out of play or dead when a keeper has control of it.

Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Rob
Unlike other sports the ball is not out of play or 'dead' when held by a player. The ball is in play at all times and it is only out of play when it crosses a boundary line, when a goal has been scored or when the referee stops play with the whistle.
So in the case of a goalkeeper with the ball in her possession during play, a goal will be awarded should the ball cross the goal line.
In addition a goalkeeper can be guilty of any offence while holding the ball such as charging, kicking an opponent etc
The goalkeeper has six seconds or thereabout from the moment the ball is in her control to put the ball back into play.

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Answer provided by Referee Dennis Wickham

The referee would have to decide

(a) did the goalkeeper carry the ball into the goal, in which the result is a goal;
(b) did the opponent commit a foul before the ball entered the goal.

A defender may not make any challenge to a goalkeeper in possession of the ball. So, most contact could result in a charging foul. In theory, a rash movement toward the keeper in possession could be viewed as play in a dangerous manner.
The wise referee, however, doesn't wait for an injury. If there is any risk of a collision, a quick whistle is better than a slow trip to the hospital.

Even without a foul, the restart in high school when play is stopped when the keeper is in possession of the ball is an indirect free kick to the kicker's team. At higher levels, the referee is more likely to let play continue when the keeper is in possession and simply give a loud, public warning to the attacker, stopping play only if there appears to be an adverse consequence to the defending team.

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Answer provided by Referee Keith Contarino

Anytime all of the ball crosses all of the goal line in accordance with Law 10, a goal is scored.
Only if the referee had stopped play would the goal not count

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