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Question Number: 9686

Law 1- The Field

RE: Ex Professional

Vit Kozianski of Shenzhen, China asks...

Now I am really going to embarrass myself to the whole world. Guys for many years I played the game professionally at the highest level you can imagine (being chosen for world cup) admittedly it was 100 years ago. I consider I have a very good grasp of the rules, the ball, the ref, linesmen and the field..I still play for several teams in my adopted city in China and love the game. Your website triggered something in my mind which I have never considered in 45 years of playing this game (yes thats right 45 years). Most of my playing career has been in goal and until I discovered your site I never ever considered this question - -WHAT THE HELL IS THE ARC ON THE FIELD IN FRONT OF THE 18 YARD BOX FOR???????. WHAT PURPOSE DOES IT SERVE?????..There!!!! I have embarrased myself and come clean to the world.

Answer provided by Referee Victor Matheson

There is no such thing as a stupid question (only stupid answers, but we'll get this one right for sure.) The penalty arc marks a distance 10 yards from the penalty spot. It is there to ensure that players remain 10 yards away from the ball during the taking of a penalty kick. No more embarrassment for you.

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Answer provided by Referee Chuck Fleischer

Well youngster that arc wasn't on the first fields I played on! Perhaps it was optional way back in '54. It came about in the late 1920's to show where 9,15 m from the penalty mark was. So now there are three places where the players know exactly where that distance is. One wonders why they can't retire that distance when the Law requires it. That has always been a question of mine... ..Regards,

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