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Question Number: 32042

Law 12 - Fouls and Misconduct 11/20/2017

RE: Adult

Muhammad Rizwan of Abbottabad, Abbottabad Pakistan asks...

During a Match here when a goalkeeper caught the ball in his hand and just keep it on the ground to fixing his boot lace without informing a referee and when opponent came near to him he just picked the ball up again in his hands.. what you say I think its IDFK? what should goalkeeper do to fix his lace..?

Answer provided by Referee Jason Wright

Hi Muhammad,
That would be an indirect free kick. By placing the ball at his feet he has released the ball and he cannot handle it again.
If the keeper needs to fix his laces he should let the referee know at the next opportunity and the ref can hold up play while a defender helps the keeper (keeper fixing their laces takes more time due to gloves).

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Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Muhammad
The goalkeeper has released the ball from his possession so he cannot pick the ball up again without committing a technical offence punished by an IDFK. It is a schoolboy error.
I once had a situation in an U11 game where a young goalkeeper with the ball in hand placed it at his foot while he pulled up his sock. There were some appeals for an offence which I waved them away. I spoke to the player some time later. He was only filling in as GK that day and it was an innocent action that did not need to be punished.
If a goalkeeper needs to tie his laces he should wait until the ball is out of play and request permission to correct his equipment from the referee which should be given. The game cannot start without a GK on both sides so leaving the field to correct equipment is not an option. With gloves etc it is best to gave the GK a few seconds to sort it.

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