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Question Number: 33289

Law 11 - Offside 4/30/2019

RE: Competive Adult

gargy of Haifa, Israel asks...

There was a situation were player A shoot to goal, and in the time of the shoot, player B of the same attacking team was in an offside position.
The keeper pushed the ball, and the ball got directly from the keeper's push to a defender. The defender tried to kick the ball away, but failed, and instead of kicking away it became a pass from the defender to player B (who was in an offside position when player A shot).
Is it an offside when player B touched the ball or not? and why?


Answer provided by Referee Richard Dawson

HI Gargy,
although offside is based on involvement & position the restriction for attacker B CAN be lifted if there is a deliberate play on the ball by a defender that does NOT fit the concept of a deliberate save , a rebound or deflection.

In your scenario the keeper makes a deliberate save so NO restriction is lifted at this point, attacker B is STILL is restricted.

The ball is then deliberately played by a 2nd opponent?
OR the ball rebounds/deflects off that 2nd opponent?

THIS is where OFFSIDE will be adjudged as either a deliberate play but a mistake (which ALLOWS attacker B to participate because the ball is not last touched by his teammate) or a possible rebound/ deflection after the initial deliberate save (which will NOT lift the restriction on attacker B because under the LOTG it IGNORES the defenders touch and STILL considers the attacker B teammates' touch to still define the attacker B's initial position.)

Usually if the defender has time, space and is unchallenged and simply whiffs it will be seen as a deliberate play mistake and the attacker B will be released from his restriction.
There would be NO offside if the officials held this opinion. B is free to accept the pass as you say. In point of fact based solely on how you describe it it appears this is a mistake or error

However it is entirely plausible that the deliberate save redirect of the ball into the 2nd opponent gave that defender no time or space to do anything but involuntarily react to the balls proximity as it passes by him and thus it could be classified as a deflection or rebound off of him like as if he was a goal post. If this was the official opinion then OFFSIDE is called because attacker B's restriction was NOT lifted. INDFK out

SO whether an INDFK out for the B touch or Play on B can score! It will be based on the opinion of the officials as to their view of how the 2nd defender interacted with the ball. Did it simply strike him so fast & unexpectedly or did he simply whiff it? Your scenario sounds like a wiffle! lol

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Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

We can say for certain that the save by the goalkeeper does not reset offside so any attacker in an offside position at the moment of shot continues to be restricted from getting involved in active play by either interfering with play by playing the ball or interfering with an opponent by challenging for the ball etc after a save.
Now in your description you say that the ball went to a defender who tried to play the ball albeit poorly which then went to an attacker who was in an offside position. Once it was a deliberate play by the defender that is a reset of offside.
The basis behind that is that an attacker cannot be offside from a ball that is played to him by an opponent. The only exceptions are a save, a deflection or a rebound.
From your description none of those three exceptions were present so it is play on with no possible offside.
Had the ball went directly to the player in an offside position from the goalkeepers save then that would be offside when the attacker plays the ball.

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Answer provided by Referee Peter Grove

Hi Gargy
The offside law states that a player who becomes involved in active play after the ball deflects or rebounds from an opponent is guilty of an offside offence under the category of ''gaining an advantage'' but with the following exception:

''A player in an offside position receiving the ball from an opponent who deliberately plays the ball (except from a deliberate save by any opponent) is not considered to have gained an advantage.''

So in the example you give, although the player would have been correctly penalised for offside if they had received the ball directly from the goalkeeper's save, they would not be guilty of an offside offence if the referee judges that the kick of the ball by the defender was a deliberate play. In the situation where the referee opines that the kick was a deflection, rebound or save, they should call an offside offence when the player becomes active.

In your description you say that the defender 'failed' - but they did not fail in kicking the ball, only in getting the ball to go where they wanted it to. Without being there and seeing it, it's slightly tricky to judge but for me, that sounds a lot more like a deliberate play than an accidental deflection.

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Offside Question?

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

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