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Question Number: 28995

Law 18 - Common Sense 11/21/2014

RE: rec Under 11

peter quinlan of floral park, ny usa asks...

Hi Guys,
reply to Q..28983 the player was alright and continued to play after being hit in the face, my question is in a u-14 boys game at the start of the game during kickoff a player standing over the ball purposely missed it with his foot and the opposing team players ran into the centre circle he start laughing being a wise ass the ref walked over to him and had a few words, should he have gotten a yellow card or is that in the laws seeing that the game had not started, thanks again.

Answer provided by Referee Richard Dawson

Hi Peter,
Even though play has not started the referee could, if, there was sufficient reason to, caution or even send off a player or substitute! A referee has authority to deal with and punish ANY misconduct pre match, in-between and post match according to the nature of the misconduct.

Cards here are overkill. This is a bit of youthful goofiness, not a real threat to the match or spirit of the game. While it is permitted to feint on a free kick it serves little purpose to do so here. A simple warning, hmm not so cute laughing boy, the last guy having difficulty getting the ball in play wound up with several bad cases of RCCS where he eventually left the game!. I would hope you are smart enough to avoid them. What's RCCS? Referee considers cautionable situations.

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Answer provided by Referee James Sowa


Why would he receive a yellow card? The only possibility would be unsporting behavior and I feel this is a stretch. This is a 14yo kid who is just trying to be funny. The referee did the right thing by talking to him. If this pattern of behavior repeats itself, then maybe the referee could consider a caution for UB.

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Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Peter
First off the ball is in play when it is kicked and moved. It is legal to feint at any restart and the player should not have encroached until the ball actually moved.
Now the part that was at issue was the laughing. I would concur with Referee Sowa in that having a word was the best approach in the circumstances. Had the referee decided to caution then he could have done so in Law. Interestingly had the player received a red card before kick off he would not be allowed to take part but could be replaced by a named substitute. The team would not play short and it would still be allowed its substitution quota with the one exception that the number of substitutes on the bench could not be added to.
Referees make little mental notes of these matters and may have less sympathy for the player later on in the game. I give less benefit of doubt to players that I have had a word with when confronted with a decision whether to caution or not. He's used up his get out of jail card in my book on a questionable one.

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