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Question Number: 29563

Law 18 - Common Sense 7/28/2015

RE: Other

Ian of NPR, FL US asks...

Can two players on the same team wear the same jersey number?

Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Ian
The whole purpose of numbered shirts is for identification and it is a competition rule. It is therefore not possible for two players to have the same shirt number.
If say Player A No 5 was cautioned and then Player B also Number 5 was cautioned would the referee be able to distinguish between the players or if Player 5 was requested to be substituted which 5 would that apply to.

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Answer provided by Referee Dennis Wickham

Jersey numbers are an issue of local rules of competition, not the laws of the game.
That said, I've never heard of any competitive league or competition that allows two players to wear the same number. Some recreational leagues don't care about numbers or numbering.

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Answer provided by Referee Richard Dawson

Hi Ian,
Although the LOTG do not require #s it is usually part of the ROC or league or association to make identifying players easier! It is simply not a good idea, add a felt pen or tape to alter an 11 into 111 or ++ so there is no possible way to confuse the referee as to who gets credit or blame for actions on the field or during the match. Take note of a recent question to give you some thoughts as to why it is a poor concept!
look up question 29484

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Answer provided by Referee Ben Mueller

The LOTG do not specify that numbers need to be used. Most local league would not allow this for identification purposes.

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