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Question Number: 32092

Law 12 - Fouls and Misconduct 12/12/2017

RE: Professional

engin ataman of olympia, Washington United States asks...

between 1:31 and 1:50

penalty or not? your opinions greatly appreciated..
thank you

Answer provided by Referee Richard Dawson

Hi Engin,
truthfully It was an unlucky penalty, however, it was a penalty! It did affect the attacker in he got to the ball first, not that he left a leg in the way to be kicked which would be a foul on him as a trip . There was no DOGSO or reckless or excessive component in my opinion. Being late to the party is always a concern as the challenge for the ball was legit. This was NOT an attacker seeking to be awarded a foul by moving in against a downed keeper as the ball squirts off in the opposite direction trying to draw a foul. The attacker beat the defender to the ball and the defender kicked/tripped him albeit it accidently, it will still be considered careless by the referee. So if we consider the action as careless, this is a foul. The referee made that determination since a foul PK was awarded. He was right there so he had a good look. You can disagree with the decision but not the fact he clearly saw what occurred.

I am quite tired of trying to explain why the encroachment on PKs is ignored so I will leave that topic for now but players who think dissenting a firm decision awarded by the referee and is a DONE DEAL, feel obligated to prattle on to the extent of forcing their team into untenable situations for being sent off for receiving absolutely UNNECCESSARY double cautions just need to zip it and their life and contributions to the match would be so much better for it!

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Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Engin
The Laws of the Game tells that it is a direct free kick to kick or trip an opponent. It does not tell us that the action does not have to be intentional or the force used for it to be a regular foul. It does tell us that if the kick is reckless it is a caution and if excessive force is used it is a red card. So what has happened here is that the Red defender kicked / tripped the White player carelessly inside the penalty area which is a foul and a penalty kick. It is apparent it was not intentional yet as I said the Laws make no provision for inadvertent kicks /trips to an opponent.
The one decision I would question the referee on is the blatant encroachment at the penalty kick in front of him by White and Red players. That was a sufficient reason for a retake. We know players are given some latitude in their movement at PKs yet White followed by Red was almost level with the ball when it was kicked!
The other issue for me was the dissenting of the decision at half time. It is senseless and the no 2 Red player ended up getting cautioned needlessly for dissent and then picked up a second caution for which he was sent off. What he hoped to achieve at half time was futile and all he did was put himself in a precarious position which indeed came to pass 4 minutes into the second half when he was sent off. I would suspect that what was said at half time was downright unpleasant as Referee will listen to some moaning yet will caution when it goes beyond tolerance levels. Red played most of the second half with 10 players and who knows what would have come to pass with a full strength side?.
The final point is that even if the penalty was harsh how many opportunities to score were squandered by both teams in the 90 minutes. Games are not won / lost by poor play, nothing else.

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