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Question Number: 32578

Law 11 - Offside 7/7/2018

RE: Competive Under 15

Doug Crawford of Oakland, CA US asks...

I was AR today and our CR told us that a week ago there was a new rule change:
If a player is in an offside position (PIOP), the ball is played by a teammate, but then the ball deflects off a defender (or in any way touches the defender), then offside is reset, and the PIOP can play the ball.

I know this is not the way we have been playing for the past 10 years or more - only a controlled play by a defender will reset offside.
I had one play today where this would have mattered, but I decided the attacker had interfered w play by hovering close to the defender and getting in his way, so the offside infraction occurred before the defender touched the ball.
I downloaded the new 2018-2019 LOTG, dated June 2018, but did not see anything to this effect under Law 11.
Have you heard about changes in the offside rule to this effect?
Thanks as always /Doug

Answer provided by Referee Richard Dawson

HI Doug,
I am afraid that information is incorrect.
A DEFLECTION is NOT a reset where as a deliberate play IS

There is no new interpretation it remains the same.

A deliberate play resets which allow the PIOP to play the ball as his restriction is lifted, whereas a deflection, rebound or deliberate save does NOT reset

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Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Doug
A deflection or rebound is not a reset of offside so your referee colleagues is mistaken. Only a deliberate play of the ball by an opponents resets an offside which has been the case for a very long time.
Also I am not sure what happened a week ago? The current Laws of the Game was effective from the 1st June and the only charge to Law 11 stated
** The first point of contact of the 'play' or 'touch'of the ball should be used** . This change is to do with VAR where slow motion shows a detectable difference between the first and last contact with the ball so a definition of the precise moment that the ball is 'played 'is needed when judging offside position.

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Answer provided by Referee Peter Grove

Hi Doug, there has been no recent change that matches what your colleague told you.

In fact, the law has remained essentially unchanged in this particular regard since 1979. It is the case that prior to that date, any touch by a defender precluded an offside offence (this was known as being ''played onside'') but it has not been true at any time since then. The current law says that a player is still guilty of an offside offence (assuming all the other criteria are met) if the ball has:

''rebounded or been deflected off the goalpost, crossbar, match official or an opponent''

By contrast, a player is not guilty of an offside offence when:

''receiving the ball from an opponent who deliberately plays the ball (except from a deliberate save by any opponent)''

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Offside Question?

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

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