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Question Number: 33619

Law 9 - The Ball in and out of Play 9/4/2019

RE: Ex Referee, 5 a side football comp Adult

Geoffrey Collier of Eastbourne, East Sussex United Kingdom asks...

Handball ? I know what Rule 12 states but for clarification....

Goalkeeper is in the penalty area but picks up the ball which is half in and half outside the penalty area line by stretching out his hands over the line to collect it. His feet stay in the area

Handball ?

Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Geoffrey
It is an accepted norm in the laws that all of the ball has to be over all of the line to be outside the area to which that line delineates. If part of the ball is touching the line it is considered that it is in that area
So if any part of the ball is-touching any part of the penalty area line or plane of the line the ball is deemed to be inside the area.
Once the ball is deemed inside the area the ball can be touched by hand by the goalkeeper and there is no offence.
The position of the body or the hands are not relevant. At an extreme a goalkeeper could be totally outside the penalty area and use his hands to touch the part of the ball that is over the line with part of the ball on the line and there is no handling offence.



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Answer provided by Referee Jason Wright

Hi Geoffrey,

We don't consider which part of the ball is being handled (which is a bit different to fouls against players - where a kick of a leg outside the PA when the player is half inside the PA would NOT result in a PK). We simply consider the overall position of the ball - and 'half in, half out' of the PA is considered in the PA. So, if any part of the ball is being handled - even if it's JUST the part outside, we consider it to be inside the PA.

Look at it another way - what if the ball was on a boundary line, 50% out. And a player handles only that part of the ball that's out - what are you going to do?

You award a DFK on the line, because the ball is still in. So, the same principle applies around the PA.



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Answer provided by Referee Peter Grove

Hi Geoffrey,
If I understand your description correctly there is no handball offence here. I have to say I'm a little puzzled by your use of the wording 'half in and half outside the penalty area.' Because in law, there is no such thing. If any part of the ball is overhanging the penalty area line, the ball is inside the area. If no part of the ball is overhanging the line, it is outside the area.

It's similar to the ball being in or out of play. Just as the ball is either out of play or not, it's either in the penalty area or not - there are no halfway measures.

Finally, it's not the position of the player that counts, it's the position of the ball. If the ball is in the area (which as mentioned, includes when it's overhanging the line) when the keeper handles it, there is no offence. It makes no difference where the keeper's feet are.



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