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Question Number: 3421


RE: Rec Under 11

Dan of , asks...

Indirect kick awarded, ref's arm is up. Ball is placed by ref, who backs away, and is momentarily distracted. First player runs at the ball from the side for a successful touch, and the second player sends the ball into the goal. Goal denied because the ref says that he didn't see the touch. Turns out that he wasn't looking toward the ball when it was touched, and went as far to admit that this might have been the case. Ref seems to have assumed that kick would wait until he was looking at the ball. Is there an additional signal that the ref is supposed to give to allow the indirect kick to proceed?

Answer provided by Referee Stacy Kalstrom

NO, unless the referee has said to wait for his/her whistle, the play may begin when the kicker/s are ready. As an official, we should never take our eyes off the ball in this situation. OOPS.

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Answer provided by Referee Dawson

Hi Dan,..Ref Stacy is spot on, this is bad mechanics by the center referee. The referee can request a free kick be delayed but must make the point obvious (i.e. stand in front of the ball, establish eye contact with kicker, hold up and point to whistle, state WAIT FOR THE WHISTLE) if he needs to get into position or deal with players. .As the game was dealing with 10 year olds perhaps there were no ARs to assist. In such a case the neccessary information (i.e. Proper two touch for INDFK was ok) could be gained there if a referee was unsure. However, the referee does have final say as to the validity of a free kick. Taking away a goal or allowing a goal for lack of attention is not likely to win you many brownie points. .FOCUS and concentration must not wander! .Take this example, I have seen an EPL game where the referee turned his back on a DFK that struck the referee in the back of the legs and rebounded directly back to the original kicker who then rekicked it for a Goal. .The fact is either AR or 4th official should have communicated to the poorly positioned center referee that the kicker had touched the ball a second time without another player from either team inbetween. The referee is like a goal post (there are many who would agree with that :-) so the ball deflection when retouched by the kicker was an INDFK to the opposing team. NOT a goal!.I will bet the officials of that game with their terrible communications and lousy mechanics in allowing an illegal goal to stand was met with disbelief in the aftergame review. The fact that the opposition players did not freak out shows how the laws of the game are not always well understood even at the highest levels. Cheers

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