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Question Number: 30447

Law 11 - Offside 5/22/2016

RE: Competive Under 18

Sean of Davenport, FL USA asks...

My question is about the offsides rule.

I had the ball moving towards the opposing team's goal. I was well behind all the defenders. As I got to just inside the 18 I passed the ball backwards to my teammate who was also closer to the goal then all the defenders.

It was basically the 2 of us going at the goal keeper as I had gotten past all the defenders. I could of taken the shot but I passed it backyards to my teammate who was about 5 yards behind me and the ball.

The referee rules her offsides?

Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Sean
As described the referee was in error here. A player cannot be in an offside position behind or level with the ball. Your team mate was 5 yards onside and it made no difference that she only had the goalkeeper between herself and the goal.
Law 11 states and I quote
* A player is in an offside position if: he is nearer to his opponents’ goal line than BOTH the ball and the second-last opponent.* BOTH highlighted by me. Your team mate was not nearer the goal line than the ball just the 2nd last opponent which is not enough to be in an offside position.
I would point out that offside is one of the most frequently asked topics and one that many including inexperienced referees get wrong.

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Answer provided by Referee James Sowa


This seems to be an error by the Referee/AR. As long as the player was behind the ball when it was played, it should not be offside. From the sounds of it, this should have been a good goal.

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Offside Question?

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

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