Soccer Referee Resources
Ask a Question
Recent Questions

RSS FEED Subscribe Now!

Q&A Quick Search
The Field of Play
The Ball
The Players
The Players Equipment
The Referee
The Other Match Officials
The Duration of the Match
The Start and Restart of Play
The Ball In and Out of Play
Fouls and Misconduct
Free Kicks
Penalty kick
Throw In
Goal Kick
Corner Kick

Common Sense
Kicks - Penalty Mark
The Technical Area
The Fourth Official
Attitude and Control
League Specific
High School

Common Acronyms
Meet The Ref
Contact AskTheRef
Help Wanted
About AskTheRef
Panel Login

Question Number: 9019

Character, Attitude and Control

RE: rec Adult

phil wearmouth of Sydney, NSW Australia asks...

Can someone tell me why, whenever a foul is committed the team earning the free-kick are encouraged to take it quickly and keep the game moving, except when it's in an attacking position and the culprits (defending team) are allowed to form a defensive wall?

Answer provided by Referee Chuck Fleischer

Referees always like a quickly taken free kick because the footballers will chase play rather than stand around and second guess the referee's decision to give the foul. But we never demand nor do we prohibit it. ..Coaches have their styles and influence players accordingly. Never the referee! ..Regards,

Read other questions answered by Referee Chuck Fleischer

View Referee Chuck Fleischer profile

Answer provided by Referee Dawson

Hi Phil,.major point: DEFENDERS ARE NOT ENTITLED TO FORM ANY WALL EVER! referees simply respond to the needs of the match with respect to the agrieved team CHOOSING to take a free kick quickly or asking to wait and set up a specific play. Free kicks are the result of fouls and certain technical breeches. Tactically most fouls are committed to take away attacking opportunities. By NOT permitting the OPTION of taking free kicks quickly we are further harming the agrieved team. Referees must proactively work to deter defenders from delaying the restarts. It is ONLY the attackers who have the right to decide when they want to take the free kick. Defenders have no rights at this point!..Ironically if a team with the free kick dawdles or fusses about too long it is entirely possible they could be quilty of delaying the restart in as much as the defending team tries to delay things so they can set up players to better defend against the attack. Attacking soccer flows better if play is more or less continuious both from a fan watching standpoint as well as a playing viewpoint. A referee as the neutral arbitrator and keeper of the laws judges what passes for fairplay and proper conduct at any and all stoppages. .CHeers

Read other questions answered by Referee Dawson

View Referee Dawson profile

Answer provided by Referee Laflin

The way we deal with it in the UK is.....Foul committed..Freekick is awarded..The attacker is asked immediately "Do you want to take it quickly?"..If they say Yes, the freekick is taken quickly. The defence have no right to make a wall, they can however stand wherever they like without punishment in this case (as long as they don't do anything stupid like kicking the ball away, obviously)..If the attacker says No, they don't want to take it quickly, this is when I as the referee tell them "Wait for the whistle" and hold it up to make it clear there will be a signal to restart play. ..I then step out and enforce 10 yards for any defensive wall...Get into position and blow the whistle, making sure the 10 yards stay 10 until the ball is kicked....A few points to add: If they ask to take the freekick quickly, as I said, the defence can stand pretty much wherever they like, as the attackers _forfeit_ their right to having the defence 10 yards from the ball. If they kick the ball into a defender standing a yard away from them, tough, play on...Also, for a 'quick freekick', as above, there is _no whistle signal_ required, a simply forward motion of an arm is usually seen, but there doesn't have to be anything. For the slow freekick (or ceremonial as we call it nowadays ;-) ) then the whistle signal is required. The attacker, if he doesn't want the quick freekick, must wait for the referee to mark out the 10 yards, and then must wait for the whistle, or the freekick is re-taken..Regards,

Read other questions answered by Referee Laflin

View Referee Laflin profile

Ask a Follow Up Question to Q# 9019
Read other Q & A regarding Character, Attitude and Control

The following questions were asked as a follow up to the above question...

See Question: 14897

Soccer Referee Extras

Did you Ask the Ref? Find your answer here.

Enter Question Number

If you received a response regarding a submitted question enter your question number above to find the answer

Offside Question?

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

This web site and the answers to these questions are not sanctioned by or affiliated with any governing body of soccer. The opinions expressed on this site should not be considered official interpretations of the Laws of the Game and are merely opinions of AskTheRef and our panel members. If you need an official ruling you should contact your state or local representative through your club or league. On AskTheRef your questions are answered by a panel of licensed referees. See Meet The Ref for details about our panel members.