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Question Number: 30172

Law 12 - Fouls and Misconduct 3/4/2016

RE: Youth to adult, comp and rec.

Barry Stewart of Chilliwack, BC Canada asks...

This question is a follow up to question 30168

As in a question a few weeks back, the poster has not been abundantly clear in his description. Funnily enough, all the panelists again took the same tangent in their translation - as did I on my first few readings of Scott's post.

Scott wrote: 'They continually ran 5-8 yards off the field of play to avoid defenders.'

I then realized he 'probably' meant: they took a single step off the pitch, then ran 5-8 yards parallel to the touch line before before coming back in.

If such is the case, no wonder the CR blew it off as inconsequential. It's perfectly legal.

Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Barry
The written word has always had it challenges.
My answers opine on what generally happens in games. Players rarely if ever run 5/8 yards wide off the field of play. Even if they were being coached to stay wide one finds that they rarely use all of the pitch never mind making it 8 yards wider!! In many fields it is not possible even to do this.
We know what the law says on this. Referees should use that to ensure that the game is played fairly and not in a gotcha fashion. The test for me in these situation is whether the referee NEEDS to caution or not.

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Answer provided by Referee Richard Dawson

Hi Barry,
we did address that possibility but again to remind, just exiting the FOP a wee bit not a big deal, running into the stands is a bigger deal! We often get furrowed brows deciphering or interpreting the written word into mental pictures. It is good to remind us to stay an open mind, to reread and try to address all possibilities. Sometimes though we are rushed to find time as a volunteer site and no one here claims to be perfect . It is great we have attentive readers to help keep us focused. We all work diligently to remind those who officiate to make the best decisions to not only know and understand the LOTG but to grasp the situational awareness of the match as it pertains to the players as to the NEED to intervene! However as a TEAM the CR must ALWAYS look after his ARS and the ARS who give their input must seek to support the CR no matter if they have a difference of opinion!

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