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Question Number: 6256

Doug of , asks...

Judging offside and AR flagging for such. Player A1 plays a long ball towards B's goal. A2 is in an offside position about two yards behind B1. B1 intercepts the ball, but is immdediately challenged by the returning A2 player. B1 has the option to immediately clear or pass the ball to a teammate, but is immediately challenged by A2. Since A2 has gained somewhat of an advantage from being in the position, should they be flagged for offside or does the possesion of B1 reset? Younger ages this becomes more of a problem. Since the possesion is likely to be lost or clear doesn't happen.

Answer provided by Referee Chuck Fleischer

Doug offside position and activity happened first, give offside and restart where the offside attacker was at the moment the ball was last touched by the opponents. Reason -- the offside player's close proximity to the defender interfered with play, that is not permitted when in an offside position...When judgment of offside position is necessary, at the moment the ball touches or is played by one of his own team ask these questions: ..1. Is the player in the attacking half of the field?.2. Is the player nearer the goal line than the ball?.3. Is the player nearer the goal line than any two defenders?..If any question is answered no, stop here. The player is not in an offside position...If all are answered yes, then the player is in an offside position, ask two more questions: ..a. Is the player interfering with play or an opponent?.b. Is the player gaining an advantage?..If either of these is true then the assistant flags for offside and the referee blows for the infraction and awards an indirect free kick, to be taken from where the attacker was at the moment the ball was touched or played by a member of his own team...Remember that it is not contrary to the Law to be in an offside position. After the ball is played a footballer may run into an offside position and play it without penalty. When a player is in an offside position and the ball is played forward that player may not get involved, without penalty, even if the ball bounces off an opponent or an opponent misplays it...Regards,

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Answer provided by Referee Keith Contarino

It's certainly possible that A2 interferred with play when B1 got the ball but you have to decide that immediately. If you let play continue and B1 controls the ball, there's no offside infraction. Your allowing B1 to gain possesion does reset offside. It would seem I'm disagreeing with Ref Fleischer but I'm not. Read his answer carefully and he says the offside should be called immediately, 1.e. before B1 gains clear possession.

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Answer provided by Referee Gary Sebalja

I think that you may be getting confused with a player in an offside position who does not gain an advantage and comes back onside to on that does get advantage which is offside.

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Offside Question?

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

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