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Question Number: 28276

Law 15 - Throw In 3/23/2014

RE: Rec adult, U-18 competitive Adult

G. Barry Stewart of Chilliwack, BC Canada asks...

This question is a follow up to question 25652

I'm wondering why the restart doesn't go back to the throw-in?

If the goal can't count, why does the goal kick follow? If my team didn't get our throw-in " then didn't get the goal¦ then also lost possession, I think we'd feel triply abused.

The example certainly speaks to the value of refs keeping eye-contact with their ARs.

Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Barry
Once a ball leaves the field of play it is not possible for play to continue. It cannot be seen as a trifling decision that can be ignored.
If the referee has missed a flag for the ball going out of play and it takes a short period for the flag to be noticed the referee stops play and goes back to deal with the flag and a correct restart as per the Laws.
As I said a flag for a ball out of play cannot be ignored and it must be dealt with. In this question the AR clearly saw the ball leave the field of play which meant play should have stopped and a goal kick restart was required. So no question that the goal must be disallowed and while the scoring team will be 'upset' it is a matter of fact that the ball was out of play.
In some situations such as offside, ball touched at a goal kick just inside the penalty area line etc, an unseen flag can be lowered if the offence is deemed to be trifling and has no effect on play. Now FIFA's Referee Committee has opined in some situations that after an "extended period" of play the referee cannot act on a flag except in the case of violent conduct / serious foul play.
It is the referee's opinion as to what is an "extended" period. Certainly a referee cannot go back after another restart that is allowed to happen elsewhere on the field of play. In those instances the AR should drop the flag unless of course its violent conduct etc. In this instance as the restart is a kick off which has not happened the referee can go back to the ball out of play decision.
The referee can still deal with a flag for violent conduct after play has restarted elsewhere. If, upon becoming aware of that unseen assistant referee's signal for misconduct, play is stopped solely for this reason, the restart is a dropped ball where the ball was when play was most recently stopped.
As we have said many times prevention is better than cure. Dealing with the flag immediately does not allow the situation to arise.

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Answer provided by Referee Jason Wright

Hi Barry,

The original question states that the ball crossed the goal line without the referee being aware (ball crossed the goal line, referee missed the AR's signal, play continued until a goal was scored, then the AR advised the referee the ball had crossed the goal line).

In that case play goes back to what the restart should have been if the referee hadn't missed the AR's signal; the goal kick from when the ball first went out of play.

There was no throw-in mentioned in the question.

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