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Question Number: 31545

Law 13 - Free Kicks 5/17/2017

RE: College

Iyke dave adizua of enugu, enugu Nigeria asks...


Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Perfectly good goal. The Real Madrid player was fouled. The ball was at rest at the location of the foul and it was put into play legally by Nacho with a goal resulting.
Now players have become so accustomed to ceremonial free kicks in these locations that they assumed that there was not going to be any quick free kick. The Laws allow for quick free kicks so there is no issue there. If this happened at half way would there be any issue with Real Madrid getting on with play quickly? No
Now the only questionable part for me is the location of the referee who is ahead of the ball in front of a defender. Having said that his location is not in line with the shot so it could not be construed as interfering with the defenders or goalkeeper and the Sevilla player who is beside the referee has no interest in the ball yet rather helping with the fouled player. So he was not disadvantaged by any action of the referee
For me Sevilla switched off and paid the ultimately penalty of conceding a goal. Unfortunately the decision encourages the defending teams to stand on top of the ball in such situations. I am certain Sevilla will have a player stood on the ball in every free kick in this situation going forward!

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Answer provided by Referee Peter Grove

Hi Iyke,
I am all in favour of quick free kicks, even when they are in a goal-scoring position and I agree with ref McHugh that players have become too used to being given time to set up a defensive wall at their leisure. My view is that there is no such entitlement, either by the letter or the spirit of the law and that the team that has just broken the law by committing a foul has no rights at the subsequent free kick - except the right not to be misled by the referee.

Now, I have not really studied any replays of this so I'm not sure of the exact position of the referee just before the kick was taken but I had seen it suggested that he might have been blocking the view of some defenders or even the goalkeeper. If this had been the case then I would have been a little uncomfortable with the referee's actions but assuming ref McHugh's analysis is correct (and I'm sure he has looked at the videos of the incident) then the defenders have nothing to complain about.

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Answer provided by Referee Richard Dawson

Hi Iyke,
I just laughed at the ridiculous comments of the pundits claiming that he was
(a) given a nod from the referee when no permission is required at all
THERE WAS NO NOD -possibly- the player asked if he could , but he is NOT required to the right to take a free kick quickly is a choice the attacking team can employ
(b) the defending team was not ready (no rights but to withdraw 10 yards )
(c) they need a chance to organize it is not sporting ! - WHO fouled who? Who stopped the scoring chance originally by fouling the Real player??
(d) there was no use of foam to mark the ball restart location used

(1) the referee was in tight and AHEAD of the ball and could be thought of as engaging the defenders or blocking line of sight of the keeper
(2) Was the restart location really at the point of the foul or set off to the side and back where it came to rest after the trip? Was this a legal placement given we stress blade of grass restarts closer to goal? I was taught the restart location close to goal is crucial as the ability to strike a ball with spin and curve even 6 inches can make difference.

My conclusion.
I like the fact the offended team got the advantage DESERVED for having their player fouled. It is becoming habitual this congregating around foul locations without any cautions to defenders so perhaps some leeway to restart location is what is required to reassert the right to take free kicks unimpeded.
Although I think a referee should not be as close and in front better off to side and even or behind so as not to be seen as engaging the defenders The ball was stationary when kicked albeit a bit away from the spot of the foul!

Well done Nacho!
As to the referee
His Match His Decision His Reputation

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