Soccer Referee Resources
Ask a Question
Recent Questions

RSS FEED Subscribe Now!

Q&A Quick Search
The Field of Play
The Ball
The Players
The Players Equipment
The Referee
The Other Match Officials
The Duration of the Match
The Start and Restart of Play
The Ball In and Out of Play
Fouls and Misconduct
Free Kicks
Penalty kick
Throw In
Goal Kick
Corner Kick

Common Sense
Kicks - Penalty Mark
The Technical Area
The Fourth Official
Attitude and Control
League Specific
High School

Common Acronyms
Meet The Ref
Contact AskTheRef
Help Wanted
About AskTheRef
Panel Login

Question Number: 28681

Law 12 - Fouls and Misconduct 8/23/2014

RE: Competitive Under 15

Aaron Speca of Virginia Beach, VA USA asks...

This question is a follow up to question 28677

I have one more follow up situation: Same tournament, next game, different officiating crew. Loose ball in the box off a corner kick, during the melee there is contact between the foot of the offensive player and the keeper (it appears to me that the keeper has not yet secured the ball but it is very close).

Differences between this play and the 'foot drag' play that I see ...

(1) The ball is not clearly under keeper's control
(2) Contact is part of an attempt at the ball rather than just dragging the foot behind
(3) Immediate concern for the keeper by the offensive player, and the sportsmanship displayed afterward.

On this play, #21 grey was given a yellow card, which I'm not sure I have that much of a problem with except for the comparison to the other play.


Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Aaron
The play by Grey#21 was reckless and it was a caution. It makes no difference that the goalkeeper did not have control of the ball. There clearly was no malice in the player's kick yet it was dangerous to the goalkeeper. Perhaps the referee might have taken the context into consideration of the lack of skill shown and the immediate show of concern by the player to decide not to caution.
I believe referees though must send out the message that this type of dangerous kick is not acceptable. From the grey players reactions they expected a caution.

Read other questions answered by Referee Joe McHugh

View Referee Joe McHugh profile

Answer provided by Referee Richard Dawson

Hi Aaron,
only 1 more question? You will be missed when you stop lol
When you attempt to kick the ball but MISS and kick the player/keeper instead generally things are not going to go in your favour if a referee is aware of what has occurred. I applaud the young lady for the show of concern, I believe it was genuine but fouls are not intent based, but reality based, she did the deed, it was minimum careless, a DFK foul, with tendrils of reckless or so the findings of the referee in this match, thus cautionable.
While it is conceivable that a stern verbal warning, given the opposing player's apparent apologetic nature might have served the same purpose, the showing of the yellow card is NOT only a warning to the young player who did the kick but to, 'EVERYONE', setting a STANDARD that is now, very evident!
I explained earlier, each referee is a match condition, whereby the expectations of players must adapt to the good or bad of the current weather front currently overhead on their pitch. Weather cycles can change depending on certain pressure systems the players might help create but stormy weather is always looming if the pressures get too great. A well timed caution can help dissipate a storm and meet the expectations' of the players.

My good colleague Referee Wickham previous answer along with your own very insightful thoughts,

'I can't help but feel that if the CR had made some kind of effort to warn the forward on that play, at the least, that perhaps the later play could have either been avoided, or the keeper might not have felt the such an urge to retaliate.'

This is the golden thread of the art of proactive refereeing. IMO, everything the referee does (or doesn't do) can affect and influence the players.

' When you can't change the direction of the wind adjust your sails" Life and soccer, mirror and reflect the same values, so much of the time! It is why the tag the beautiful game is appropriate!

In my very opinionated not so humble opinion we have appreciated your efforts to seek us out for some clarification! I suggest you yourself should look into becoming a referee! Given your interest and insight, a look at the game from center circle will be illuminating when you compare what you will see from there to what you see from here! lol

Read other questions answered by Referee Richard Dawson

View Referee Richard Dawson profile

Ask a Follow Up Question to Q# 28681
Read other Q & A regarding Law 12 - Fouls and Misconduct

Soccer Referee Extras

Did you Ask the Ref? Find your answer here.

Enter Question Number

If you received a response regarding a submitted question enter your question number above to find the answer

Offside Question?

Offside Explained by Chuck Fleischer & Richard Dawson, Former & Current Editor of AskTheRef

This web site and the answers to these questions are not sanctioned by or affiliated with any governing body of soccer. The opinions expressed on this site should not be considered official interpretations of the Laws of the Game and are merely opinions of AskTheRef and our panel members. If you need an official ruling you should contact your state or local representative through your club or league. On AskTheRef your questions are answered by a panel of licensed referees. See Meet The Ref for details about our panel members.