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Question Number: 29580

Law 14 - Penalty kick 8/4/2015

RE: Comp High School

Jim Laydon of Iron Mountain, MI USA asks...

Watching a Spanish League game on TV recently I saw something unique and was wondering if it was legal. Penalty kick was awarded and the attacking team ALL lined up on the 18 or the arch with no apparent kicker. Everyone on the defending team was confused including the keeper. The whistle was blown and a member of the attacking team came off the 18 shot and scored. But at no time until the shot was taken was there an indication who it would be. Although it may have been declared to the ref it wasn't to the defending team because they were completely confused. The goal was allowed and play continued - what do you think?

Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Jim
As described this is not legal. Law 14 is very specific on the penalty kick procedure which states that the player taking the penalty kick must be properly identified. Now there is nothing to prevent the player going back for his run up to the edge of the penalty arc which then places him among his team mates. Generally it is the player that spots the ball that is the kicker yet that does not have to be the case as long as the kicker is clearly identified.
In this video the placer of the ball #5 does not take the kick and a team mate #11 came forward to take the kick. The referee though should ensure that the player is identified and remains the kicker. In this case it is not clear to me that #11 was the nominated taker although the fact that #5 faced away with no interest in the kick. IMO it was unfair on the GK that the kicker was not identified and it should have been a retake with a caution for #11 for USB.
Interesting that there was no negative reaction from the opponents to the PK antics.

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Answer provided by Referee Richard Dawson

Hi Jim,
I think it odd, the LOTG are very clear, the PK kicker MUST be identified as a single individual to the referee. Only that specific individual is permitted to initiate the PK kick. If another player was to take the PK the opposing team is awarded an INDFK out, no goal would be scored.

I am interested in the mechanics of how the kicker could be known to the referee but NOT the opposing team? As Ref McHugh suggested there is nothing preventing the PK kicker from standing among their team mates in the correct designation outside he PA. For instance though, on the video we know who spotted the ball on the pk spot ? As a referee I generally acknowledge who the kicker is because I give him the ball to place on the PK spot and go over ,wait for whistle, etc..... Yet I have to admit if #5 had said to the referee#11 is taking it if the opposition under the LOTGs must also be made aware of it?

If this identification process was not established to the satisfaction of the referee, the PK was not scored in a legal manner in my opinion I do not know if I would caution the kicker and have the PK repeated with a designated (make that an identified kicker) or award the INDFK out for such an infringement? I have to wonder if the player who spotted the ball or the captain simply said to the referee # so and so is taking the penalty kick and the opposition were not aware? Given this is the second time I have heard of it and only recently we might expect a circular explaining the yea or nay of this tactic if indeed only the referee need be informed


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