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: 33137

Law 12 - Fouls and Misconduct 3/12/2019

RE: Rec Adult

russell of Sydney, Australia asks...

Another 'Deliberate Handling' call - my apologies for recycling a recent topic.

In the recent Roma v Empoli match, a VAR call chalked off a goal for DH by an Empoli player. Tough call it would appear.

Fast forward to the 6.57 mark of the highlights.

From what we understand, soon this will not be an issue, as it would fall perfectly in line with the apparent so to be amended rulings around DH.

Right now, you have feel sorry for Empoli for what seemed like a fair passage of play. Interestingly, only player to ask the question about a handling was a lot further away then many of his team mates immediately involved.

As it appears to be reported to date - will this new DH ruling only apply if the ball falls to an advantage for the player/team whom 'handled' the ball.
If it falls to the opponent, is it simply 'play-on', or will there be some aspect that says 'as long as the opponent gets fair chance to play the ball' ?

Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Russell
I believe that if the ball falls to an opponent then there is no benefit so more than likely that play will continue as perhaps a trifling / doubtful no call.
In the Napoli incident had the ball been cleared away nothing would have happened and it would be play on with no call.
For the vast majority of us VAR is not relevant and in a regular game without technology this is not going to get called. Even with VAR it was a bit if a struggle to see the DHB and for me it should not have been chalked off.
It also highlight the fact in my opinion of the debate continuing for the foreseeable future on DHB.
In my game at the weekend I had four appeals for handling of which I awarded 2 free kicks. One was where the player raised his arms in his attempt to charge down the ball and the other looked like the player did not try to avoid the ball. None of the four were intentional in that the players deliberately tried to play the ball with their arms. The raised arms one certainly would have caused a furore had it not been called.
Those remind me of the difference in rugby union between a knock on and a charge down which has two differing outcomes. With the charge down it is play on while the other is a scrum.
I think soccer needs to look at other sports to come up with a vial le solution to DHB

Read other questions answered by Referee Joe McHugh

View Referee Joe McHugh profile

Answer provided by Referee Richard Dawson

No problem Russell ,
DH is and has been an ongoing issue for years . In today's game it is apparently less controversial to call nearly everything just in case than for a referee to exercise their opinion. Basically for achieving consensus, accommodating the easy view of ball to hand contact it is a foul JUST in case it might be unfair, is sitting well with the players & coaches who cry about the contact at most anytime.

No more worrying about anything really, if it appears the ball and hand have any contact remotely looking as unfair the new wave is to call it. Its a cheap out but one players are apparently ok to accepting more fouls which lead to free kicks and possible PKs rather than accepting any goal off a handling.

I think there can be very little advantage played if the handling is called on an attacker it needs to be stopped if it IS seen given the field location whee it is likely to occur . That said a redirected ball that quickly clears in favor of the defenders there would be no reason to stop play as it WAS likely accidental anyways! I agree with Ref McHugh in my game, on the pitch, at park level football, that's a goal .

Read other questions answered by Referee Richard Dawson

View Referee Richard Dawson profile

Answer provided by Referee Peter Grove

Hi Russell,
I agree with my colleagues that under the current law (and in my opinion) there is not enough there for a deliberate handling offence.

Actually, when it comes to the new laws, the full wording of all the changes to the LotG for 2019/20 has already been published on the IFAB website.

The part of the new handball law that seems to be relevant here, says:

''It is an offence if a player:
- gains possession/control of the ball after it has touched their hand/arm and then:
- scores in the opponents' goal
- creates a goal-scoring opportunity''

I guess we can say that a goal-scoring opportunity was created by the handling so that under the new law, this would be considered a handball offence.

Read other questions answered by Referee Peter Grove

View Referee Peter Grove profile

Ask a Follow Up Question to Q# 33137
Read other Q & A regarding Law 12 - Fouls and Misconduct

The following questions were asked as a follow up to the above question...

See Question: 33145

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.