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Question Number: 30787

Law 4 - Players Equipment 9/19/2016

RE: rec Under 16

steve cruise of derby, derbyshire england asks...

Does a boy player with long hair have to tie it back during the game?one of my players was instructed by the ref to do so stateing that it was in the rules on saftey grounds.

Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Steve
Not sure what law book this referee is looking at as there is nothing in the Laws if the Game about hair. Okay a referee could stretch it to the extreme by claiming that if the player got hair in his eyes that he might not see where he is going so he could run into a player. Should that happen he could be cautioned for being reckless.

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Answer provided by Referee Jason Wright

Hi Steve,
To echo ref McHugh's sentiments he's been reading a different LOTG to the rest of us! Sounds like the sort of misinformation that might come via word of mouth more than anything.
Sometimes referees will talk about how hair with beaded or knotted ends is dangerous, so perhaps there's been a misapplication of that concept.

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Answer provided by Referee Peter Grove

Although as a coach, I would sometimes advise players to to tie back their hair so it did not get into their eyes and/or distract them by blowing in front of their face while playing, this was purely for tactical reasons and not because there is anything in the Laws that requires this, either for safety or for any other reason.

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