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Question Number: 31634

Law 5 - The Referee 7/6/2017

RE: Professional

Jannie van der Merwe of Barcelona, Barcelona EspaƱa asks...

Dear Sir

Player violence after whistle blows for half time -
within the ambit of the rules of the game or not?


Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Jannie
Yes violent conduct before the game commences, at the half time interval and after the final whistle comes under the powers and duties of the referee. The referee can and should take disciplinary action for any such misconduct. On the field of play and immediate surrounds cards are shown whereas elsewhere such as in the entry to the field of play or changing rooms the player/ is informed that he is being sent off and being reported for the misconduct with no cards shown. Obviously once the game is over the sending off offence has no playing consequences in that game whereas it clearly has before and during the game which includes the half time interval. A player sent off before, during and at half time takes no further part in the game and his team plays short once the game has commenced. A player sent off before the game can be replaced by a named substitute. This is an extremely rare occurrence yet the Laws allow for it.
I would go as far as to say that violent conduct by a game participant anywhere at the game can and should be reported. So violent conduct say in the car park can be reported to the League authorities who will deal with same based on the referees report.
The powers to take such actions are covered in Law 5 of the Laws of the Game and I quote
**has the authority to take disciplinary action from entering the field of play for the pre-match inspection until leaving the field of play after the match ends (including kicks from the penalty mark). If, before entering the field of play at the start of the match, a player commits a sending-off offence, the referee has the authority to prevent the player taking part in the match (see Law 3.6); the referee will report any other misconduct**

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