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Question Number: 30031

Law 12 - Fouls and Misconduct 1/19/2016

RE: Intermediate Under 13

Phil of Tarzana, CA United States asks...

This question is a follow up to question 30027

Referee Dawson said that a player may shield the ball near the corner flag to discourage an opponent from leaving the field to challenge. I know that you're not allowed to move the flag during a corner kick. But to get at a shielded ball, can an opponent leave the field, & they touch or move the flag with their body (not with hands or arms) in order to play the ball? i.e. sort of run into it in order to play the ball.

If not, what is the remedy?

Thanks again,

Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Phil
Nothing wrong with touching the flag with the body as part of play nor is there any difficulty with a player going around a player off the field of play to challenge from the front side. The flag cannot be removed or held.
I think it would be better tactically for the challenging player to go in front of the player which then allows him to play the ball perhaps away or off the defender to win a corner or a throw in.
What I would say is that referees should manage these situation very carefully as they are fraught with difficulty and has the propensity to create problems for the game.

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Answer provided by Referee Richard Dawson

Hi Phil,
it is more an attacking player, trying to use up time, knowing the flag is assisting him by the fact it is a solid object part of the FOP. The ball can hit it come back into play, the opponents need to work around it . They can not rip it out of the ground , as my colleagues states, the antics in these areas do create tensions, the referee needs to get in and manage the conditions or bad thing s can occur!

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Answer provided by Referee Gary Voshol

Change one word in your question, Phil - 'move' to 'remove'. That's really what's not allowed. If a player bumps into the flag post and it moves without coming out of the ground, there's no problem.

Additionally, holding the flag with your hand to get it out of the way is not allowed either. Was that what you were thinking of when you said 'move'?

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