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Question Number: 28664

Law 12 - Fouls and Misconduct 8/18/2014

Zluva of České Budějovice, Czech Republic Czech Republic asks...


Can be this situation attempt to trip an opponent? (slow motion is in time 0:40) Please tell me, when is this offence possible and when not.

Thank you!

Answer provided by Referee Richard Dawson

Hi Zluva,
Absolutely a DFK foul of attempt to trip ! No contact with ball, only the athletic ability to leap over the slide tackle prevents contact with defender and then attacker looses balance and falls. Perhaps the attacker winds up selling the call somewhat by going to ground in a free fall simulation but it is a clear DFK foul in my opinion! It is WHY slide tackles are inherently foolhardy as a last ditched attempt to win the ball as they often fail and carry severe consequences. Defenders should try to stay on their feet!

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Answer provided by Referee Gene Nagy

Yes, this is an attempt to trip resulting in a PK. The defender did not touch the ball and his action caused the forward to fall. On a bad day, the defender may even be sent off for denying a goal scoring opportunity as well.
But you wonder how referees judge these 'attempted' to trip calls. Generally, if the player touches the ball first and the other player tumbles, it is not considered a trip. However, if this is done with excessive force it is a foul, even if the player touches the ball first. If he does not touch the ball and interfers with the opponent, we have a foul as in this clip.
The decision if it is an attempt to trip or not rests with the referee. Many of these are not punished when the attacker retains advantage in spite of the attempt, in which case the ref yells Play On! and signals with his hands.

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Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Zluva
The actions of the defender here asked a question of the referee when he failed to win or make contact with the ball. In these type of situations a defender not making contact will the ball will generally result in a foul for attempting to trip an opponent which does not require any contact.
Also please remember that the referee will have an angle of view from behind on the incident. He is likely to see a player coming across at speed, lunge at an opponent, not make contact with the ball and the defender's left leg rising in what looks like contact on the player. He does not have action replay or a side on view. This will look like a penalty every single time
Had the defender stood up and not made a last ditch attempt to win the ball perhaps the attacker would have kicked wide or the shot would have been saved by the goalkeeper. Poor defending in my opinion.

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