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Question Number: 32827

Law 11 - Offside 10/22/2018

RE: rec Adult

Sal of CHICAGO, IL USA asks...

A player comes back from an offside position from the opponents' half into his own half about 10 meters in before anybody touches or controls the ball and commits an offside offence. My question is, what is the best way for the AR to signal the offence?

A) Raise the flag at the half line and point with your other hand at the place of the offence?

B) Step over your boundaries and go past the half line and raise your flag and point it at the place of the offence?

C) Raise the flag at the half line and let the referee figure it out?

I've never had the opportunity to see this situation unfold on any televised or live game and I'm curious on how to properly handle it as an AR when it happens.

Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Sal
It is C. The AR signals offside as normal and probably the astute referee has figured it out as offside.
It is not going to test very many officials too often

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Answer provided by Referee Richard Dawson

if play is stopped due to offside INVOLVEMENT in the opposite half by the trailing AR then the CR should be aware. But as in any form of communication eye contact simple verbal/radio or hand point. Pregame could be useful to confirm how CR.
I can tell you that prior to the INDFK being inside their own half the very few times I flagged for an over & back PIOP offside the CR often missed my signal & I dropped flag when it was obvious play had continued in favour of the opposition anyway. The far AR could mirror signal if the CR had his back to me . But it would depend on time and the direction play takes as to necessity.

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Answer provided by Referee Peter Grove

Hi Sal,
Overall I would tend to agree with my colleague ref McHugh that C is the correct answer - or at least the closest to a correct answer in your list of options. Actually, at least according to the guidelines issued by the footballing authorities in England, the fully correct procedure is that the AR and referee should remain in communication so they both know what is going on and after the AR signals for offside by raising the flag as normal the referee will then decide on the exact location of the offence. Obviously this will be made easier at higher levels with electronic communications devices being used by the officials.

As ref Dawson further alludes to, the AR could also use the 'over and back' hand signal which is informally recommended in a number of different refereeing jurisdictions to indicate a player who comes back from an offside position, whether they cross over into their own half or not.

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Offside Question?

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

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