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Question Number: 31326

High School 3/8/2017

RE: High School

steve oneal of Eufaula, Alabama USA asks...

Can a referee call half time or ball game. I one team has been awarded a corner kick or free kick before time ran out?

Answer provided by Referee Peter Grove

Hi Steve,
Yes they can, although in High School games there is almost always a time keeper whose job it is (in conjunction with the referee) to keep track of when time has fully elapsed. There is also usually a countdown timer and a buzzer, horn or other sound to indicate when the game had ended.

The referee can signal to the timer whenever they want the clock to be stopped but there is no mandatory requirement to stop it for corners or free kicks (unless there is also an injury, caution or dismissal involved).

In games played under the IFAB's Laws of the Game, the referee is the sole judge of time and may end the game whenever they decide that the full amount of time has been played, even if the ball is out of play for a corner kick or free kick.

Under both codes, the only kick for which time must be extended, is a penalty kick.

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Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Steve
Thanks for the question
In NFHS games timing is much more exacting and does include an official timer. The role of the official timer is set out in Rule 6.2. In the absence of a timer the referee by agreement carries out the timer role as defined. Once the timing clock reaches zero play is ended no matter what the circumstances. Rule 7 states that a period shall end at the expiration of time.
So in your example once the clock reaches zero at the award of the corner kick, free kick etc the period is ended. Only in the case of a penalty kick can time be extended to allow that single kick.
Now in the case of FIFA games the timing is not so exacting nor is there an official clock or independent timer. The referee is the sole judge of time and he can add on for time lost. Most will find a few seconds to see out a play such as a corner, free kick etc and it is somewhat expected due to the way the game is timed. Like NFHS time is also extended to allow a penalty kick to be taken.
In a recent UEFA referee training video it shows a referee ending the game at a corner kick. The kicker ran 30/ 40 yards to take the kick and then was not too happy about the half being ended as he placed the ball which resulted in a caution for dissent. The advice was that the referee was too literal with time and that he allowed a situation to develop that which could have been avoided. In NFHS it is unavoidable and fully expected whereas in FIFA it is expected that a few seconds can be found to restart play.
I suspect that with the two differing method could cause confusion to those that watch both.

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Answer provided by Referee Joe Manjone

NFHS and AHSAA rules indicate that the home team is to provide a timer, but if the school does not provide a timer, the time can be kept on the field by the referee. In high school rules, the time is counted down to zero similar to American Football and basketball. But, unlike American Football and basketball where a play can continue after the time has expired (reached zero), in high school soccer, the game ends immediately when time expires. Even if the ball is in the air going toward the goal, if time expires, the ball is dead on the way to the goal and a goal could not be scored. Thus, the examples that you give, free kicks, could not take place because time has expired. The only exception is that play can be continued to complete a penalty kick that was called before time has expired. However, this is rare because the clock is to be stopped on a penalty kick, so that the time would have to expired in the few seconds from the time the penalty kick foul occurred until the referee blew the whistle and stopped the clock. I hope that Eufaula is having a successful season and I get to see them in Huntsville in May.

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