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Question Number: 28098

Law 1- The Field 1/9/2014

RE: Competitive Under 16

Tony P of Daytona Beach, FL USA asks...

I understand that the whole of the ball needs to be across the line for it to be in/out.
But Can a goal keeper pick up the ball while it is 'on' the line at the edge of the penalty area?
It seems to have caused quite the discussion amongst our group.
1: (Defending Team) it has not crossed out of the penalty box fully so therefore the goalkeeper can still pick it up.
2: (Attacking Team) It is not fully in the box therefore the Goalkeeper can not pick it up .
Thank you

Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Tony
Yes is the answer. Once the ball is on the line it is in the penalty so the ball can be legally touched by the goalkeeper's hands. It makes no difference if it inbound or outbound.

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Answer provided by Referee Dennis Wickham

As long as any part of the ball is on or over the line, the ball is considered to be inside the penalty area. The keeper is allowed to handle it.

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Answer provided by Referee Jason Wright

Hi Tony,

The law says that the lines form part of the area they enclose - that's why 'on' the boundary line counts as in the field.

Following from that, anything on the Penalty Area line is inside the PA.

So if any part of the ball is on or above the PA, the goalkeeper can handle the ball (it doesn't matter if he handles the part of the ball that's outside the line or on the line).

That's also why a defensive foul right on the PA line will result in a Penalty Kick.

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