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Question Number: 32223

High School 2/9/2018

RE: Top teams in district High School

Brian Hernandez of CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas United States asks...

This is an end of game question. There is a few seconds on the clock. The ball was kicked out of bounds. The team throws the ball inbounds. A player shoots the ball. While the ball is in the air the time expired. The referee blew the whistle. The ball bounced and the opposing goalie makes a play on the ball but it went over his head in the goal. Since the shot was taken before the whistle and the goalie made a play on the ball should the goal be counted? Or was this simply the case of the referee jumping the gun and calling the game too early taking the goal from the team?

Answer provided by Referee Richard Dawson

Hi Brian,
I always thought USA high school Rules of soccer had a timer system with a public clock where a horn sounds ending the match? If the horn sounds before the ball has completely crossed the goal line, under the crossbar, between the posts then NO goal can count. The referee can request time to be added or stopped as the situation demands but the clock is always running time and when it runs out a horn is sounded to signify the match is over not usually a referee whistle?

In FIFA matches the LOTG allow the referee only to be the sole decider of the match end which is inclusive of him blowing the while to end the match . No goal can occur after the whistle and if for any reason lets say the referee had dropped the whistle, or broke it as in getting stepped on if in HIS opinion the match ended before he could retrieve a secondary whistle the match is technically over when he says it is! We can only imagine the uproar should it occur!

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Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Brian
As described the referee was correct. Once time expired no further play is allowed. So whether the official timer signalled or the referee who by agreement is acting as timer blows the whistle no further play is allowed after that moment.
The same would apply in a FIFA game as once the referee signals for the end of play that is the end of the game.
In FIFA games the referee has a tad more discretion as he is the sole timekeeper and probably not timing it to the nearest second like in NFHS so he can *find* a second or so to see a play out. Having said that some referees in FIFA games time it with a countdown timer like a NFHS game and once the watch reaches zero the end of game signal is given no matter what. No goal can be scored after the signal is given.
In summary NO goal could be awarded in your scenario and the referee *did not jump the gun*. It is the reverse to a gun start. As a runner cannot go before the gun (which is pulled back) once the signal is given nothing is allowed after that signal in soccer. The game ended at the moment of the whistle when the clock reached zero and as the ball had not entered the goal before the whistle all play after that is null. Tough yet that is the rule.

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Answer provided by Referee Peter Grove

Hi Brian,
Under NFHS rules, the game ends when time expires. There is a designated timer, normally provided by the home team although the head referee may be the timekeeper by previous agreement. There should be a visible clock, normally (though not necessarily always) the stadium clock is used for this purpose. When time expires, there should be an audible signal to show that time has expired. Even if the ball is in the air, if it does not cross the line before that signal sounds, a goal is not scored.

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