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Question Number: 31610

Law 11 - Offside 6/19/2017

RE: Select Professional

Larry Kap of MIDDLETOWN, PA United States asks...

Where is the restart for an offside call? It was always where the player was originally offside. Has that changed? Is it now where he/she actually touches the ball like I've been told by some partners?

Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Larry
Law 11 has now changed in that the restart is now taken from where the offence is completed that is where the player in an offside position interferes with play or an opponent. As you know interfering with play is defined as touching the ball and interfering with an opponent is challenging an opponent or impacting on the ability of an opponent to play the ball.
Throughout the Laws, the general principle is that a free kick is awarded from where an offence occurs so this now applies to offside when the offence is completed and actually occurs. This change brings Law 11 in line with the other laws. So if a player runs 30 yards from an offside position to play the ball the free kick is from where he touches the ball or challenges an opponent. The extreme of this is that an offside free kick can now be awarded in a players own half if the player moves from an offside position in the opponents half to commit the offside offence in his own half.
We also know that being in an offside position or running towards the ball are not an offence so it made no sense to go back to the offside position particularly when it is only an offence when the final condition is met which is at or close to the ball. I also believe that it is easier to get the game restarted as the location of the ball i.e. Whee the ball was played, the challenge of an opponent when play is stopped for offside roughly defines the free kick location which is the same as most free kicks.

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Answer provided by Referee Richard Dawson

HI Larry,
it is always good to take a refresher course to stay in touch with latest LOTG changes. The Offside restart was altered a while back to the INVOLVEMENT location not the POSITIONAL location of the PIOP.
There is a MUCH greater emphasis on the player actually TOUCHING the ball to be guilty of interfering with play and being OBVIOUSLY close when challenging or no uncertainty to be blocking access to be guilty of interfering with an opponent.
The fact that the INDFK can now be awarded INSIDE ones own half is a big deal because the closer to goal the greater a scoring chance accrues.

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Offside Question?

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

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