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Question Number: 32653

Law 11 - Offside 8/18/2018

RE: Under 16

samuel of Seattle, WA usa asks...

what was the reasoning for IFAB changing the offside call rule from basically putting the flag up at the second t last defender line to now being where the ball is played, even if that attacker touches it 30 yards downfield?

was it just to give the AR more time to allow another play to touch it or something because of how common it is to get screwed when a non-offside player runs around the back or perimeter of the field to get a ball?

Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Samuel
The reason was to align the restart location with the location of the offence. All of the restarts for offences are at the location of the offence. In offside it is not an offence to be in an offside position so the offence only happens when the ball is touched or the player interferes with an opponent. It is a decision to be consistent throughout the Laws.

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Answer provided by Referee Peter Grove

Hi Samuel,
The position of the free kick for an offside offence was never level with the second last defender - it used to be taken from where the player who committed the offside offence was, when the last touch by a team mate occurred.

The reason for the change was given in the 2016/17 edition of the Laws and in the IFAB's own words, is as follows:

''The Law and the interpretation were contradictory. Throughout the Laws, the general principle is that a FK is awarded where an offence occurs so this now applies to offside.''

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Answer provided by Referee Richard Dawson

HI Samuel,
the premise was, Given it is NOT an offence to be offside positioned, thus having the restart at the restriction point of a starting position was contrary to the stated law and thus the change to the place & time of actual INVOLVEMENT was created for a more applicable restart. INDFKS for offside were pretty general in the area as opposed to blade of grass restarts, with the new interpretation, we are a bit more fussy given it is NOW possible to have the restart can occur INSIDE your own half!

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Offside Question?

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

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