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Question Number: 31529

Law 11 - Offside 5/13/2017

RE: Rec Under 15

Emily of Groton, Massachusetts United states asks...

Someone on my team took a shot and the goalie saved it, but then she dropped it. I took the ball and the ref called it offsides. However, I believe it was onsides. What is your opinion?

Answer provided by Referee Gary Voshol

You haven't given us enough information to make a good decision.

Was it a caught ball, or did it simply deflect off the keeper?

Were you in an offside position at the time your teammate took the shot on goal?

These are things that referees have to observe to make a good call or no-call for offside.

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Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Emily
Let me put it this way. Based on the limited information in the description
If a player is in an offside position at the moment of a shot from a team mate and the ball is saved by the goalkeeper which rebounds to that offside positioned player the referee will call that as offside under *gaining an advantage by being in that position* when the player touches the ball or interferes with an opponent.
There are occasions when offside is NOT reset when touched by an opponent which include when the ball rebounds / deflects off an opponent and/ or the frame of the goal and also from a save. So I would say that there was every chance that you were in an offside position at the time of the shot from your team mate which then restricted you from interfering with play or an opponent as there was no reset of offside from the goalkeepers save.

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Answer provided by Referee Richard Dawson

Hi Emily,
couple of key points require some elaboration.

Where were you in relationship to the 2nd last opponent & or the ball and the opposing goal line when your teammate kicked the ball at the keeper?

It is THAT moment of last touch of the ball by the teammate you will be either be restricted from play BECAUSE you are in an offside position closer to the opposing goal then either the 2nd last opponent or the ball or you are good to go and follow up on the shot with no issues.

However if you WERE in an offside position then a keeper making a deliberate save will NOT reset your restriction . UNLESS the keeper saved the ball then held onto it for the 6 seconds and only then dropped it later by mistake. Such a ball is not a rebound or deflection or dropped accidently after a save because the keeper would have had uncontested possession for a good long while. As long a you have dome nothing to interfere with the keeper. You cannot impeded a keeper from releasing the ball once it is IN his possession just as you cannot interfere if you were offside restricted!

If the keeper bobbled the ball in stopping the shot If you were a PIOP (player in offside position) then you could be guilty of gaining an advantage and the INDFK awarded for offside!

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Answer provided by Referee Peter Grove

Hi Emily,
It's a tad difficult to make a judgement here since you don't supply us with probably the most important piece of information - where you were at the time the ball was last played by a team mate.

If you were further away from the opponent's goal line than the ball and the second last opponent at that moment, then you would not be guilty of an offside offence when you eventually touched the ball.

However, if you were not, then assuming the goalkeeper's actions amounted to a deliberate save (which is what it sounds like) you would be guilty of an offside offence as soon as you touched the ball, under the category of 'gaining an advantage by playing the ball [...] when it has [...] been deliberately saved by any opponent.' Alternatively, there could possibly be a case of 'interfering with an opponent' since again, you have not described your exact position when your team mate took the shot.

There is another possiblity - even if you were in an offside position when the shot was struck but if the goalkeeper had then established full and untrammelled control over the ball for a period of time before releasing it in a way that could be construed as her deliberately playing it to you, there would not be an offside offence. However it doesn't sound like this is what happened, based on your (somewhat limited) description.

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Offside Question?

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

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