Soccer Referee Resources
Ask a Question
Recent Questions

RSS FEED Subscribe Now!

Q&A Quick Search
The Field of Play
The Ball
The Players
The Players Equipment
The Referee
The Other Match Officials
The Duration of the Match
The Start and Restart of Play
The Ball In and Out of Play
Fouls and Misconduct
Free Kicks
Penalty kick
Throw In
Goal Kick
Corner Kick

Common Sense
Kicks - Penalty Mark
The Technical Area
The Fourth Official
Attitude and Control
League Specific
High School

Common Acronyms
Meet The Ref
Contact AskTheRef
Help Wanted
About AskTheRef
Panel Login

Question Number: 30168

Law 12 - Fouls and Misconduct 3/2/2016

RE: Intermediate Under 13

Phil of Tarzana, CA United States asks...

This question is a follow up to question 30159

I'm curious about the lack of concern of players continually leaving the field by such a wide margin. The OP said they continually went out 5-10 yards. I never worry about a few yards (or even more if it's to retrieve a ball that left the field), but it would seem to me that it would be better to advise them not to, when it's way off the field. The question was raised whether it affected play. When a player leaves the field by 10 yards, an AR or CR may not even see that another player comes back on, since their attention is on the FOP.

Thanks again for a great site.

Answer provided by Referee Richard Dawson

Hi Phil
I thought I addressed it was ok to be a bit outside and run along the touchline for several yards but not ok to disappear into the crowds and run parallel to the touchlines hiding. It is misconduct to exit the field for tactical deception. We might allow a wider swing like a loop if a player was travelling super fast and he ran perpendicular across the touchline but by in large players are required to stay inside the FOP! I am sorry if I seemed so flippant by saying it was not cricket meaning not fair it was unintended. Your observation is valid. If a player is so far outside as to be unobservable pull him up for it!

Read other questions answered by Referee Richard Dawson

View Referee Richard Dawson profile

Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Phil
I did not see it as a lack of concern rather that if it has no impact on play or there is no clear certain offence then is it necessary to intervene? The question I posed as to why it was done. If the player is running deliberately behind an AR to avoid offside or doing it for some untoward reason then he gets pulled up for that. No question. If it is just running around an opponent or a yard or being indifferent running down the touchline so then no issue.
As an AR I will always move back away from the FOP when players are close to me to ensure I have all players in view and that the player is not impacting my line of sight. My advice would be in the first instance to have a word. If it is by a significant margin then it gets dealt with and certainly 5+ yards should not be happening.
Now in this part of the world I rarely if ever see this. If it is some coached ploy then the referee would be well advised to stop it, using the Laws to do so. To stop play it has to be a caution with an IDFK restart and the referee may not wish to go that far due to the uncertainty of the offence. Perhaps at the next stoppage the referee should speak with the player, ask him why it is being done and advise him to stay on the FOP.
In this video has Blue 9 done anything wrong? He goes for the ball, his momentum brings him off the field of play and he comes back on. Correct decision to award the goal. Not even sure why the referee had to consult here with his AR other than optics.
Say had Blue been off injured and came back without the referees permission to intervene then it is a caution and an IDFK.

Read other questions answered by Referee Joe McHugh

View Referee Joe McHugh profile

Ask a Follow Up Question to Q# 30168
Read other Q & A regarding Law 12 - Fouls and Misconduct

The following questions were asked as a follow up to the above question...

See Question: 30172

See Question: 30180

Soccer Referee Extras

Did you Ask the Ref? Find your answer here.

Enter Question Number

If you received a response regarding a submitted question enter your question number above to find the answer

Offside Question?

Offside Explained by Chuck Fleischer & Richard Dawson, Former & Current Editor of AskTheRef

This web site and the answers to these questions are not sanctioned by or affiliated with any governing body of soccer. The opinions expressed on this site should not be considered official interpretations of the Laws of the Game and are merely opinions of AskTheRef and our panel members. If you need an official ruling you should contact your state or local representative through your club or league. On AskTheRef your questions are answered by a panel of licensed referees. See Meet The Ref for details about our panel members.