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Question Number: 31938

Law 11 - Offside 10/25/2017

RE: Other

Brendan of truro, uk asks...

Does a player need to be in his own half to catch an opposing player offside.

Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Brendan
No. There does not need to be any player in the half for a player to be in an offside position. When there are none or only one player say the goalkeeper in their own half the only onside position for an attacker is in his own half. If he waits in his own half until the ball is played then he is onside.

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Answer provided by Referee Richard Dawson

HI Brendan,

No, all the defenders can exit their half if they wish. The fault of position is the location an attacker chooses to be or finds themselves in when a team mate last touches the ball.
Once an attacker is within the opposition half he is vulnerable to being caught in an offside position. WHICH in of itself is NOT an offence it simply restricts the player from participating in any meaningful involvement!
All 11 players including the keeper can be inside the opponents half leaving their half completely devoid of defenders so it behoves an attacker to remain inside his own half until after the ball is played or to follow his team mate who is onside with the ball and remain behind the ball when it is played within the opposition half.
Keep in mind if there is no second last opponent in the equation the ball becomes the imaginary offside line.

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Answer provided by Referee Peter Grove

Hi Brendan,
As was mentioned in a recent answer on exactly this same topic, this seems to be a somewhat persistent myth that keeps cropping up. The law on offside requires the attacker to be in the opponents' half but says nothing about which part of the field the defenders must be in when making the judgement of offside position. As my colleagues have said, even if there were no defenders whatsoever in their own half of the field, an attacker who is in the opponents' half and closer to the opponents' goal than the ball and the second last opponent is in an offside position and if in that position when when the ball touches a team mate and assuming they then become involved in active play, has committed an offside offence.

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Offside Question?

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

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