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Question Number: 29482

Law 14 - Penalty kick 6/15/2015

RE: Rec Adult

russell of Sydney, Australia asks...

This question is a follow up to question 29479

As a follow up to 29479 question from Sal in Ontario " and the panels subsequent replies " I'm keen to hear the thoughts on this following clip.

Goal or not.

On initial viewing I thought GOAL.
On second viewing, I thought GOAL.
On third viewing, I though, what goose for touching the ball after the initial save.

The question here is around the second touch. If no second touch and the ball simply spun back in, we all know that is a fair goal. However, here, there is a second touch and therefore a question marks are raised.

Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Russell
As the referee gave the goal that is all that matters. The penalty kick is not completed until the referee says so. The number of touches makes no difference.
Would I have given it? I think the jury can go either way on this one as there is some doubt as to whether the ball was saved or not. Both the kicker and the player decide it was saved and not a goal until the referee decided otherwise. Did the goalkeeper have control of the ball and toss it backwards or did the momentum of the ball cause the goalkeeper to fumble it ?

It reminds me somewhat of cricket where many times when the ball is caught to dismiss a batsman the ball is thrown up in the air as part of the celebration landing on the ground. The player should have a firm grip on the ball for it to be counted as a wicket. The umpires decide that as the ball is fairly caught and in control by the catcher then the subsequent throw is irrelevant when it touches the ground so the batsman is called out. If the catcher though was to drop the ball in act of catching it the umpire would decide not out.
Note how careful the wicketkeeper is in ensuring the ball is not dropped to the ground in which case it would be ruled not out.
In the penalty save the GK should have been more careful and the question would then have not arisen.

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Answer provided by Referee Richard Dawson

Hi Russell,
The issue is one of timing and the opinion of the referee,
(1)the ball upon coming back down and being caught, held, possession achieved then ...tossed... away , no goal
(2) not caught but bobbled and balls momentum spun its self backwards finds its way into goal good goal!

If the keeper had just grabbed the ball and held it a bit then there is no doubt it was a save. It comes off his arm/hands so quickly and because the video is slightly blurry I can not tell if the balls momentum is finished (ending the pk) and the keeper imparts MORE force upon release or if the ball itself spins its way through him. I can only suggest to keepers, HOLD that ball until you hear a whistle or you toss it back to the referee then there will be no doubts! A ball can ricochet or rebound off the keeper post or crossbar as often as it does have power in the force of the PK kick to do so. Seen one PK , tipped by keeper, off crossbar back down off the back of the keeper's leg roll into corner off post and keeper scrambles on hands and knees to stop it on the goal line for a third touch. and in that case, it was for the save.


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Answer provided by Referee Jason Wright

Hi Russell,

This clip has become quite a sensation across the internet!

It looks to me like the keeper never had full control. It was in his hands then he relaxed his grip while the ball still had some movement, thus allowing it to fall out the back of his hands. Because there was never full control, that makes it a goal.

If he had clearly and fully caught the ball then dropped it into the goal, that would be no goal.

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Answer provided by Referee James Sowa


I have always viewed a kick from the penalty mark as over when the energy of the ball is spent. What does this mean? That until the ball is either behind the goal, in the goal, stopped or bouncing past the goal area I am going to allow the 'play' to continue. In this case, the ball never lost momentum and spun back into the goal. It is a good goal.

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