Soccer Referee Resources
Ask a Question
Recent Questions

RSS FEED Subscribe Now!

Q&A Quick Search
The Field of Play
The Ball
The Players
The Players Equipment
The Referee
The Other Match Officials
The Duration of the Match
The Start and Restart of Play
The Ball In and Out of Play
Fouls and Misconduct
Free Kicks
Penalty kick
Throw In
Goal Kick
Corner Kick

Common Sense
Kicks - Penalty Mark
The Technical Area
The Fourth Official
Attitude and Control
League Specific
High School

Common Acronyms
Meet The Ref
Contact AskTheRef
Help Wanted
About AskTheRef
Panel Login

Question Number: 31462

Law 12 - Fouls and Misconduct 4/18/2017

RE: Recreational Adult

Barry of dublin, dublin ireland asks...

My question is if a player is fouled outside the area and his momentum brings him into the box can the ref then award a penalty? this question is in response to champions league game between Leicester city and athletico madrid. not so much about that decision just i heard a discussion on a radio show after with a referee who said they are allowed award a penalty if the momentum after the foul brought the player into the box.

Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Barry
The foul is awarded from where the foul contact occurred not where the player ended up through momentum. Whatever referee made the comment you mention is totally incorrect and I would doubt his credentials as a referee.
If there is a foul on an attacker which starts outside the penalty area and continues inside such a holding foul then a penalty should be awarded.
If the foul is committed outside the area and the player falls inside the box then a free-kick outside is correct.
If there are two fouls, one outside and one inside then the referee, who has played advantage after the first offence, should award a penalty kick for the second foul.
Now in the CL game the referee awarded the penalty on the basis that in his opinion from his angle of view the contact happened on the line or just inside the penalty area. He does not have the benefit of slow motion or freeze frame. At speed it would certainly have looked like it was on or inside the penalty line which makes it a penalty. From what we saw on video replays the decision might have been a free kick as it appeared that the foul contact happened outside the penalty area. Until video technology is introduced referees will never be able to compete with TV technology so for me it looked like a penalty based on where the contact looked to have happened. It made no difference where the fouled player ended up.

Read other questions answered by Referee Joe McHugh

View Referee Joe McHugh profile

Answer provided by Referee Richard Dawson

Hi Barry,
There are fouls WHEN the contact occurs, a trip or a push, or a kick or a strike, have an exact moment of impact, that has a defined restart area based on a contact point. Then there are multiple impact fouls where the first might occur outside but a further leg sweep, extended arm push or pull or body follow through also occur even if the first foul may have already sent the player stumbling. These extra bits ensure he can not continue .

Look what happens when a charge or tackle occurs with follow though beyond the impact point? The entanglement is over metres not inches! Holding, charging is not just a grasp of a jersey or a body bang , it could be an extended arm across the chest or over the shoulder as series of pullbacks or using the body as a shield to run into over the attacker driving into the PA or legs and thighs goes through then a trailing leg comes in as a scissoring action thus multiple fouls not just one, from outside to inside the PA.

The explanation presented by the referee that they are allowed to award a penalty if the momentum of the foul brought the player into the box is consistent with what I describe that the defender doing these actions as a continuous part of the foul or series of fouls creates this multiple contact.

This is different than if a trip cause a stumble and the attacker windmills his arms for 15 or so feet before crashing to the ground inside the PA trying to draw a penalty kick from a trip some 25 feet behind him.

Where SOME difficulties occur is when a foul outside creates an unbalancing and then further contact inside the PA as he tries recovering his balance are additional foul(s)forcing him to fall thus a PK. However, if the player was already falling, the further contact has not altered anything. DFK outside remains.

In the case of the penalty the referee determined the push was inside the PA. From a slow motion point of view it looks just outside but the quick movement and arm extension and subsequent back foot puffs up the PA boundary line it was a caution PK rather than a DFK and possible send off for DOGSO .
Cheers His Match His Decision His Reputation

Read other questions answered by Referee Richard Dawson

View Referee Richard Dawson profile

Answer provided by Referee Peter Grove

Hi Barry,
There is a specific scenario in the Laws that allows for a holding offence that starts outside the penalty area and continues into it, to be penalised by a penalty kick. The actual wording is:

''If a defender starts holding an attacker outside the penalty area and continues holding inside the penalty area, the referee must award a penalty kick.''

As you can see, this specifically and exclusively applies to holding fouls. It does not apply to contact fouls such as a trip or push.

As my colleagues have stated, you could also get a series of small contacts starting outside the penalty area where the referee decides to play a (possibly 'silent') advantage and then eventually a piece of foul contact inside the penalty area. But there still has to be a foul where the point of contact was inside the area, for the referee to be able to award a penalty.

Mere momentum from a foul that is clearly outside the area, cannot lead to a penalty kick.

Read other questions answered by Referee Peter Grove

View Referee Peter Grove profile

Ask a Follow Up Question to Q# 31462
Read other Q & A regarding Law 12 - Fouls and Misconduct

Soccer Referee Extras

Did you Ask the Ref? Find your answer here.

Enter Question Number

If you received a response regarding a submitted question enter your question number above to find the answer

Offside Question?

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

This web site and the answers to these questions are not sanctioned by or affiliated with any governing body of soccer. The opinions expressed on this site should not be considered official interpretations of the Laws of the Game and are merely opinions of AskTheRef and our panel members. If you need an official ruling you should contact your state or local representative through your club or league. On AskTheRef your questions are answered by a panel of licensed referees. See Meet The Ref for details about our panel members.