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Question Number: 33266

Law 16 - The Goal Kick 4/24/2019

RE: 9 Under 16

Ivan Pekar of Codsall, Wolverhampton, UK asks...

When a goalkeeper makes a save and the ball remains on the field of play (i.e no goal kick), I hear many defending players complaining that attacking players should be outside the penalty area.So, when the goalkeeper has possession of the ball after making a save, do players have to leave the penalty area?
Many thanks

Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Ivan
That only applies to goalkicks and free kicks inside the penalty area.
There is no requirement for attacking players to exit the Penalty Area while the ball remains in play.
Having said that an attacker may not interfere or challenge the goalkeeper while he is possession of the ball. Defenders take exception to attackers who try to block or challenge the goalkeeper while he tries to release or move with the ball.
The only other possible explanation that I can think of is a follow on from some local Underage rule. Some League operate what is called the Build Out Line which requires that attackers retreat outside the *build out line* to allow goalkeepers and defenders play the ball out from the back. It is a learning tool in Underage to encourage play from the back rather than punting or kicking the ball upfield aimlessly. It is not part of the Laws of the Game.

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Answer provided by Referee Jason Wright

Hi Ivan,

Odd one! No, when the keeper has the ball in possession, it is still part of normal play with no restrictions upon any player. The ONLY think that changes when the keeper has the ball in possession is they can't be challenged and need to release it within 6 seconds. That's it.

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Answer provided by Referee Peter Grove

Hi Ivan,
Unless this is based on some local or underage competition rule, I can't imagine where this is coming from and I personally have never encountered this belief. When the ball remains in play, as you say it does in this scenario, there is absolutely no restriction on where any player can be.

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