Soccer Referee Resources
Ask a Question
Recent Questions

RSS FEED Subscribe Now!

Q&A Quick Search
The Field of Play
The Ball
The Players
The Players Equipment
The Referee
The Other Match Officials
The Duration of the Match
The Start and Restart of Play
The Ball In and Out of Play
Fouls and Misconduct
Free Kicks
Penalty kick
Throw In
Goal Kick
Corner Kick

Common Sense
Kicks - Penalty Mark
The Technical Area
The Fourth Official
Attitude and Control
League Specific
High School

Common Acronyms
Meet The Ref
Contact AskTheRef
Help Wanted
About AskTheRef
Panel Login

Question Number: 32749

Law 8 - The Start and Restart of Play 9/26/2018

RE: Rec Under 14

George of Parangarecutirimicuaro, CA Sacratomato asks...

Goalie sprints to the nearby field to retrieve a ball that has been awarded to opposing team for a corner kick. The older bother, who has been pleading he get back to the box, meets him and pushes him to get back into the goal. Little brother turns around and shoves older brother. CR comes in and cautions both players. (CR clarified he already had a conversation with both players in a previous game the week prior.)
On the very next play, goal kick in favor of the same goalie, the referee explains further to the goalie that he is in the right and his brother is in the wrong. CR expresses his appreciation for the sportsmanship exhibited by the goalie and further explains that the corner kick may not take place until the goalie is back in position in the goal.
My question, if goalie is off the field retrieving a ball that belongs to the opposing team for a corner kick, and goalie sends ball in the direction of the kicker in the corner. By rule, does the kicker have to wait till goalie is in position?

Answer provided by Referee Richard Dawson

HI George,
well that was sweet of him was it not, to retrieve a ball for the oppositions restart? It is interesting the referee decided it was in the LOTG that the restart had to wait until he was between the posts? It is not. One might think courteous & fair play would cause the opposition to wait until the keeper returned to his goal area as opposed to take advantage of his not being there. It could but does not have too. The referee though does have control over the restart so he can indeed hold it up based on his own opinion of fair play .

That said, let the team responsible for the restart retrieve the ball is the best option.

AS to the sibling rivalry here the need to caution is debatable? While the CR can indeed caution as he has noted these guys seem to follow a trend of sorts is it truly necessary? Seems redundant to caution them praise him for retrieving the ball which caused the interaction between him & the brother? A simple Wait for the whistle call out to signify this CR DID appreciate the gesture and would thus whistle in the corner!

I had a situation where the keeper pursued a loose ball over the goal line near the corner flag as an attacker was in pursuit. He thought the ball was off the attacker but it had taken a small but noticeable to me, deflection off the fallen defender some 20 yards back. I signaled corner after the ball had left the FOP which angered the keeper who had the ball under his foot when the attacker reached over and grabbed it himself out from under the foot of the keeper and tried to restart quickly. He placed the ball on the corner arc as the keeper was running back to his goal area and tried to pass it to a team mate to have a shot the shot was wide but despite the keeper retrieving the ball per say the opposition was in no way indebted to him for doing so accidently or deliberately. Even if you are a nice guy you pay for your mistakes.
Cheers .

Read other questions answered by Referee Richard Dawson

View Referee Richard Dawson profile

Answer provided by Referee Peter Grove

Hi George,
There is nothing in the Laws saying that play must be held up until the goalkeeper (or any other player) is back in position after retrieving the ball for the opponent. Common courtesy or a sense of fair play might influence the other team to wait - but the law does not mandate it.

It is for this reason that when I was a coach, we used to tell our players not to go too far out of their way to retrieve the ball when it was the opposition's restart. It puts the player out of position and means they are not in the place where they should be in order to play their required defensive role if the restart is taken quickly before they get back.

As a referee, I would not be getting involved in telling the goalkeeper that what he was doing was right (or wrong, for that matter) especially since I would be aware that I might be saying something that was contrary to what his coaches might have told him.

Read other questions answered by Referee Peter Grove

View Referee Peter Grove profile

Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi George
There was an old Q&A in the past about a quick throw in taken while the goalkeeper had slid off the field. The answer given was that play should continue which is based on the fact that play must not be held up to allow players to return to the field or for that matter take up their position.
Where the referee has intervened on a substitution, caution, words with a player and the restart is on the referees signal it is understood that play is held up to allow the player to get back to position.
In this instance why is a goalkeeper sprinting to recover a ball for an opponents restart? I have seen it done to speed up the restart but not for courtesy. Yeah we all applaud sportsmanship yet the goalkeeper has team responsibilities for setting up his defence through instruction on positioning, marking etc. My antenna would perk up immediately if this happened in a game as my first thought if there was no speed up of the restart reason is that the GK is getting the ball so as to 'control' the restart perhaps until his team mates have got back into position. It is akin to carrying the ball away after a foul.
Now if it was done in the spirit of true sportsmanship the referee can use his powers to prevent the restart in the 'spirit of the game'. But then that places the kicking team at a disadvantage through no fault of its own. It may have wanted to get the ball for a quick restart? That then is unsporting when prevented from doing that.
On the face of it this does not stack up. Throw in two cautions to boot and if I was the coach I would be none too pleased. Maybe I have been around too long and I have seen all sorts of 'tricks' and 'ploys' on restarts. It is understood that the game requires the opponents to retrieve the ball for the restart and that the opponents are ready when the ball is put into play.
I also find that cautioning here is not required. Disagreements among team mates through shoving does not require cautions and it is not the continuation of a previous game. Telling the goalkeeper that he was in the right after cautioning him for shoving makes little sense to me.
If it was my game I would be telling the two players to stop that behaviour and I would tell the goalkeeper to leave the ball alone when it is not his team restart. So much for sportsmanship. Spat between team mates, two cautions, game held up and opponents left waiting to get on with play!

Read other questions answered by Referee Joe McHugh

View Referee Joe McHugh profile

Ask a Follow Up Question to Q# 32749
Read other Q & A regarding Law 8 - The Start and Restart of Play

Soccer Referee Extras

Did you Ask the Ref? Find your answer here.

Enter Question Number

If you received a response regarding a submitted question enter your question number above to find the answer

Offside Question?

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

This web site and the answers to these questions are not sanctioned by or affiliated with any governing body of soccer. The opinions expressed on this site should not be considered official interpretations of the Laws of the Game and are merely opinions of AskTheRef and our panel members. If you need an official ruling you should contact your state or local representative through your club or league. On AskTheRef your questions are answered by a panel of licensed referees. See Meet The Ref for details about our panel members.