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Question Number: 31151

Law 15 - The Throw In 1/3/2017

RE: Rec Under 15

Duane Hall of San Luis Obispo, CA US asks...

Watched the recent Middlesbrough-Leicester match. In the ninth minute, Barragan for MID gets called for a 'foul throw'. While ugly, I didn't think it was illegal. Both feet were on the ground behind the touchline, both hands were on the ball, he faced the field. As he looked around he held the ball above his head but when he initiated the throw he brought it behind his head to launch it forward. He threw the ball with some force into the ground in front of him but there is nothing in the LotG that describes how much force should be on a throw. Thoughts?

Answer provided by Referee Richard Dawson

HI Duane,
I agree somewhat with your observation. I do not see WHY there was sufficient reason that required the referee to award the throw to the other team despite the exaggerated waist bend. It could be he had a bad habit of always being sloppy and this was a cure of sorts? I suppose a case is made to consider it a spike throw in where a ball is carried onto the field held in the hands technically deliberate handling, as the ball is in play the moment it comes in contact with the touchline plane . The issue would be the ball is NOT released according to the LOTG from OVER the head but rather below the head and driven into the ground as he faced down not out across the field . Personally while you or I might hold that no whistle was needed it was sloppy and it is a professional match not a kids rec match!

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Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Duane
Foul throws are pretty rare at the Pro level and referees allow quite a bit of latitude on throwing actions.
I believe Barragan had a number of foul throws in the game so perhaps this particular players throws have been discussed in the past by referees? All it takes is one observer to pick up an uncalled illegally taken TI and the matter gets discussed among the senior panel. So while I have not seen the throws I suspect that what you describe reads like a spike which is seen as illegal and rarely happen at this level. As I said this player may be on the radar of senior group referees for sloppy throw ins so any outlier type throw will get called
I recall a particular game I was assistant in some time ago with a very senior referee. He did not like the walking foot movement by a player at throw ins and I think he called three / four foul throws for foot faults. I thought it was a bit picky as it was not significant yet it was his call and once he called the foul throw once he was not going to let go the foul throw on subsequent similar actions

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Answer provided by Referee Peter Grove

Hi Duane,
I would agree that there did not seem to be anything too blatantly incorrect with this throw in. However as hinted at by Ref McHugh, this player is almost certainly on the PGMOL's radar as he has already been penalised several times this season in multiple different games for incorrectly taken throws. And while some of his previous throws probably were offences there have been several that, despite looking a bit ugly, were OK for me. I feel that the player is not doing himself any favours with his throwing action but at the same time it does seem to me that he is being punished based somewhat on a combination of his reputation, allied to an overly-finicky interpretation of the law.

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