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Question Number: 32043

Law 12 - Fouls and Misconduct 11/20/2017

RE: Competitive Under 14

Joe PLAZIUK of Orewa, Auckland New Zealand asks...

Ball cleared from the penalty area; well up the field. Attacker & defender get in a 'tangle' before they've left the penalty area. Linesman flags referee he has seen an infringement - by this time the ball has gone out of play.He advises referee he saw the defender grab the attacker who fell in the penalty area - they awarded a penalty; even though it was clear to others that the attacker did the initial grabbing (in fact around the neck)and not when the ball was in the area. We would have believed a yellow card to either/both and as the ball was well upfield; then a drop ball or a throw in.

Answer provided by Referee Jason Wright

Hi Joe,
The referee team will act on what they see, not what other spectators tell you they see. The AR argued that the defender committed the first offence. While both players may have been involved, if the defender is the first to escalate into that physical contact then a penalty kick is correct. The offence occurred while the ball was in play - the fact that the ball is at the other end of the field or went out before the ref took action is irrelevant. If it occurs in play, then it's a PK.
If the refereeing team couldn't determine how it started but it needed to be dealt with (say, first thing they saw was both players wrestling on the ground) then you'd card both players and restart with a DB. In this instance, the AR believes one player committed the first offence worthy of action.

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Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Joe
The referee team give what they see not what they have missed. So an AR can miss the initial misconduct which leads to the misconduct by the defender that is seen.
Once the ball is in play then any foul contact will be punished by a direct free kick or penalty kick.
In this instance the AR saw the defender grab the attacker and pull him to the ground. That can be unsporting behaviour or violent conduct depending on the manner and force used. So after the appropriate card is issued the restart is from the location of the offence and as it was inside the penalty area a penalty kick.
Now an AR can and will be attracted to other events on the field of play such as looking for offside, ball out of play on his side etc. He can then look back to see the foul by the defender.
Now as described, if that what was seen, the correct restart is a direct free kick to the defending team for the FIRST foul by the attacker after both players are sanctioned for their misconduct. That though was obviously not seen by the officials.
have a look at this video
Green fouls Blue first with a raised boot and then Blue reacted. Blue is sent off for VC, Green gets a caution for USB and the restart is a free kick to Blue.
Here is another one
Black fouls Red by pulling him around his neck. Red reacts negatively by lashing out with arm at Black. Referee I believe signalled for a throw in, AR is probably looking for the ball out of play or possible offside and the 4th official sees the strike by Red. Red team unhappy with the call.
I believe the correct decision was a red card for Red, a caution for Black for the pulling and a DFK restart to Red. That is with the benefit of video replay.

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Answer provided by Referee Peter Grove

Hi Joe,
As my colleagues say, match officials will give the offence that they saw (or if there are two offences the one that they saw as occurring first). Obviously they saw a foul by the defender as either the first or perhaps the only offence. It could be that they missed an offence by the attacker but is also possible that they saw the attacker's actions and judged that they did not amount to a foul.

Just to be clear on one thing though, once the officials judge there is a foul by a defender inside their own penalty area, it doesn't matter where the ball is, so long as the ball is in play, a penalty kick is the only correct decision, it cannot be a dropped ball or throw-in.

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Answer provided by Referee Richard Dawson

Hi Joe,
as a neutral official you can only place your faith in other neutral officials that are as uninterested in who wins as you are. Teams will do or say almost anything to achieve a victory or win a confrontation if only through their perception of truth as opposed to deliberately lying . Within any competitive format even if FAIR PLAY and sportsmanship can and do shine through when it comes to disputes that is why there is a Neutral party who must put together an unbiased extrapolation of the events as he sees and know them to be true and render a decision to move the game along. IT does not always mean we have all the facts or we interpret correctly it simply means rendering a reasonable verdict so the game can continue A referee with integrity calls what he sees even if we se it differently!

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