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Question Number: 28777

Law 15 - Throw In 9/23/2014

RE: Adult

Aaron Wawrzyniak of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania United States asks...

During a throw-in can the ball bounce onto the field of play?

Meaning the thrower intentionally allows the ball to bounce prior to completely entering the field of play.

Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Aaron
As long as the throw in not thrown straight down which is called a spike there is no issue with the ball bouncing on to the field of play.

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Answer provided by Referee Dennis Wickham

Yes. The ball is in play if it first touches the ground when the ball is on or over any part of the touchline.

Note: if the ball first touches the ground when it is completely outside the field of play, it is not in play. Under the laws of the game, the throw-in is retaken. (Under US NFHS high school and NCAA college rules it is considered a foul throw.)

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Answer provided by Referee Gary Voshol

My colleagues have answered your question as you worded it. Yes, the ball can bounce on the field of play when thrown in. It does not have to touch a player before it hits the ground.

However, I suspect this is not what you meant to ask. If you were asking, can the ball bounce outside the field and then go onto the field, the answer is an emphatic no.

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Answer provided by Referee Richard Dawson

Hi Aaron.
Imagine the touch line is a 5 inch wall of water extending straight up into the sky, if any part of the ball can get wet, it will be in play

On a throw in if the ball touches the ground outside the field of play before it enters the field of play if it is likely considered to be an incorrect throw in, you lose possession in all forms of soccer. Also a spike where the ball is pounded down is usually not released from behind or over the head but at chest height thus illegal.

Fifa does state a throw in that is correctly taken, hits the ground first then enters the field could be retaken but hard to see where this could happen exactly given the ball is supposed to be throw in from where it left the field

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