RED AND YELLOW BADGES FOR NATIONAL REFEREES
I noticed that non-FIFA referees who are refereeing professional matches are wearing a red badge. Is this the new "professional" referee badge that the federation came out with? Can you provide detail.
Is the color of the badge only being changed for the professional referees, or will the color for national and state referee be changed.
Please shed some light on this topic.
Answer (February 21,
Effective this year, those National Referees working professional games as referee or assistant referee have been given new red and yellow badges. These badges are to be worn only when they are working MLS, WPS, and USL 1 and 2 games. The different colors have no significance other than to complement whichever uniform the referee team wears.
OBVIOUS GOALSCORING OPPORTUNITY? WHAT TO DO?
I am a coach of 12 years and encountered a situation during a game last season and would like your input as to the correct call for the situation.
Here is the setup; the attacker is heading towards goal followed closely by a defender, the only player between the attacker and goal is the keeper, the attacker has entered the area and is about the 15 when the defender reaches forward and gives a slight tug (hold or grab) on the left shoulder of the attacker trying to slow down the attacker's progress, the attacker feels the hold and lunges forward through the air as if he were pushed.
Would you send off the defender for a deliberate hold in the area that denies an obvious scoring opportunity and award a pk, or would you caution the attacker for unsportsmanlike behavior, or both, or neither?
If both, what would the restart be?
Answer (February 20, 2009):
There are various possibilities for punishment, depending on the referee's perception of the situation.
Was the attacking player simulating? If so, the referee needs to decide exactly WHAT was being simulated. Was it the foul itself, or was the attacker fouled but the simulation was an attempt to get the referee to add misconduct to the punishment (i. e., a card)?
If it was the foul itself that was being simulated, then the attacker needs to be cautioned for this and the opposing team given an indirect free kick where the simulation occurred.
If the defender committed a foul (holding or pushing) and the simulation was an attempt to get the referee to show a yellow or red card, then the attacker must certainly be cautioned for this but we are still left with the fact that the attacker was fouled inside the opposing team's penalty area by a defender -- which means a penalty kick restart.
In this case, the only question remaining is whether the defender's foul also involved misconduct and thus the defender must be shown a card as well. What are the only possibilities for carding the defender based on the foul? The referee might decide that the foul itself was reckless (yellow card) or involved excessive force (red card), but the referee must be careful not to be influenced by the attacker's simulation. The other possibility is that the referee might decide that the foul interfered with an obvious goal-scoring opportunity (OGSO). Assuming all the "4 D" elements were met, the referee must take into account whether the interference was actually caused by the defender's foul or whether the attacker contributed to the interference by the simulation. In other words, if the "falling down" hadn't occurred when the attacker simulated, would the attacker's OGSO have been interfered with by the original foul?
Only the referee "on the spot" can make these determinations.
If a person is dribbling, is the defense player allowed to lean almost like being ridden of the puck in hockey. Is this obstruction? No tackle for the ball is attempted it.
Answer (February 20, 2009):
All is in the eye of the beholder, and in this case the only beholder who counts is the referee. Yes, players are allowed to charge an opponent, using their shoulder against the area of the shoulder of the opponent. We hesitate to make any analogies to the sport of ice hockey lest we be attacked by someone's father or mother.
RE: U. S. FLAG BADGE
This is in regards to the previous question regarding the wearing of American flags on referee's shoulders. According to the United States Flag Code, "The flag should not be used as part of a costume or athletic uniform, except that a flag patch may be used on the uniform of military personnel, firefighters, police officers, and members of patriotic organizations."
Does the USSF constitute a patriotic organization (Ã la the US Olympic team) and is thus exempt from this provision?
Answer (February 20, 2009):
Thank you for the email. U.S. Soccer considers itself a patriotic organization.
U.S. FLAG BADGE
Are USSF referee's still being asked to wear the USA Flag Patch as referenced in this article from back in September 2001?
The September 11th Fund as mentioned in the ussoccer.com article is closed and is no longer accepting donations:
It appears that the MLS/FIFA referees don't seem to be wearing it:
new OSI Uniform
MLS adidas Uniform
Answer (February 18, 2009):
The wearing of the U. S. flag on the uniform is (and always has been) a matter of personal choice. The 2001 article you cite is still valid as far as the wearing of the flag patch goes, but the fund no longer exists.
TREATING THE GOALKEEPER OFF THE FIELD OF PLAY
I have [an] interesting question for you, one that had senior instructors in animated disagreement. We know that:
(a) A team has 11 players, one of whom must be the goalkeeper.
(b) With permission of the referee, a player may leave the field temporarily for treatment of an injury and not be replaced. Play continues.
(c) In the case of (b) above, with the referee's permission the player may return to the field during play over any touch line, or if play is stopped, over any boundary line.
The question is, if the injured player is the goalkeeper and that team wishes to continue play while the GK is being treated, if this allowed or must one of the other players (or a sub) be designated as GK?
This situation could conceivably arise, for example, in the last few minutes of a 2-1 game when Red is down but has been pounding away at Blue's goal trying to tie it up. The Red GK gets injured and must be assessed for a possible concussion, the team has no more subs and is reasonably sure the GK can return, so they want to continue playing while momentum is on their side (perhaps also due to concern about game time remaining).
We recognize that in normal circumstances the right thing to do is to wait for the GK to return and add the time lost. But the question is: If the team wants to continue, must we force them to wait?
The referees on one side of this argument point out that no Law is being violated just because the GK happens to be off the field. The referees on the other side think the spirit of the Law (and maybe somewhere, the letter) requires that the GK be on the field. It's been an interesting discussion.
Would you like to weigh in with your thoughts and/or an official answer?
Answer (February 13, 2009):
There is no written requirement that the goalkeeper MUST remain on the field of play. However, The goalkeeper cannot leave the field with the referee's permission specifically for treatment unless he or she is either substituted or exchanges places temporarily with a field player (following the guidance in Law 3). The clear intent of the Laws is that the goalkeeper remain on the field of play. That is demonstrated through the provisions in the Law that the goalkeeper may be treated on the field, even though (with some specific exceptions) others must leave. (For the exceptions, see Interpretations of the Laws of the Game and Guidelines for Referees, Injured Players.)
However, the goalkeeper is permitted to leave the field during the course of play, just as are all players. A statement in the 2008-2009 Laws of the Game (Interpretations of the Laws of the Game and Guidelines for Referees) demonstrates
that: "If a player accidentally crosses one of the boundary lines of the field of play, he is not deemed to have committed an infringement.
Going off the field of play may be considered to be part of playing movement."
An earlier question and answer (2006 IFAB Q&A, Law 3) also illustrates the point:
"20. During a match, the goalkeeper sprints from the goal to stop an opponent. He kicks the ball out of the field of play and a throw-in is awarded to the opposing team. The momentum of the goalkeeper takes him off the field of play and before he can return, the throw-in is taken and a goal is scored. What action, if any, should the referee take?
"A goal is awarded since no offence has been committed."
A goalkeeper may be treated just off the field while play continues -- we often see this in higher-level games -- but must return as quickly as possible.
When the ball is out of play, the goalkeeper may gain the permission of the referee to leave the field specifically for treatment, but play cannot be restarted until that goalkeeper has returned to the field, been substituted, or exchanged positions with one of the field players.
BALL KICKED TO THE GOALKEEPER (YET AGAIN)
In clause 12.20 of the ATR, is the operative interpretation "deliberately kicked" or kicked "deliberately to the goalkeeper" by a teammate?
In one of my recent games, white attacker in possession of the ball is moving toward blue's goal, with blue defender challenging shoulder to shoulder. Blue defender wins possession and kicks the ball away from the white attacker. Blue goalkeeper, while still in her own penalty area, moves toward the ball and picks it up. Clearly the blue defender "deliberately kicked" the ball. But she didn't necessarily kick the ball "deliberately to the goal keeper".
Has the goalkeeper committed an infraction?
Answer (February 12,
We think the Advice is quite clear as it stands but will address the matter here.
Two answers to the first question: (a) Both. "Deliberately kicked" or "kicked deliberately" mean that there was some forethought to the player's action; the player knew where he or she wanted the ball to go and kicked it there. On the other hand, an obvious attempt to clear the ball that happens to run to the 'keeper is not punishable, nor is a ball that is obviously miskicked. (b) "To the goalkeeper" means directly to the goalkeeper or to a place where the goalkeeper can conveniently play the ball.
Second question: If, in the opinion of the referee, ... .
We add a final note, meant solely to clarify for referees (and, unfortunately, many instructors, too) that the phrasing MUST NOT be interpreted as "kicked with the intent that the ball go to the goalkeeper." "Deliberately" modifies "kick" and not the direction (meaning the totality of the direction "to the goalkeeper") which is why the kick must be deliberate and the direction must be deliberate (i. e., not a miskick) but the direction itself doesn't have to be the specific direction of "to the goalkeeper."
RESTART AFTER GOAL WITH OUTSIDE AGENT(S) ON FIELD
Roughly rephrasing a recert question: Following a goal but before the restart it is observed that A) a team official of the goal scoring team was on the field but did not interfere with play or B) a team official of the defending team was on the field but not involved in play.
Does the goal stand and/or what is the restart?
Answer (February 17, 2009):
Your complete answer will be found in the back of the Law book, under "INTERPRETATION OF THE LAWS OF THE GAME AND GUIDELINES FOR REFEREES,", Law 3 - The Number of Players. (If you do not have a copy of the Laws with the Interpretations, etc., in it, you can download it from this site.)
Extra persons on the field of play
Anyone not indicated on the team list as a player, substitute or team official is deemed to be an outside agent as is a player who has been sent off. Goals scored with an extra person on the field of play
If, after a goal is scored, the referee realizes, before play restarts, that there was an extra person on the field of play when the goal was scored:
- the referee must disallow the goal if:
-- the extra person was an outside agent and he interfered with play
-- the extra person was a player, substitute, substituted player or team official associated with the team that scored the goal
- the referee must allow the goal if:
-- the extra person was an outside agent who did not interfere with play
-- the extra person was a player, substitute, substituted player or team official associated with the team the conceded the goal
DESIGN OF ASSISTANT REFEREE FLAGS
Is there a standard design for the Assistant referee flags? I see many different designs and would be interested in having a unique one.
Answer (February 11, 2009):
No, there is no standard design for these flags, other than that they are square or rectangular.
APPLYING ADVANTAGE IN THE PENALTY AREA
Could you explain the decision in the following scenario. It caused a lot of controversy in a recent match and teams still expect an explanation from me:
A player shoots towards goal, first time, as soon as he receives the ball from a team-mate. Just as he shoots, an opposition player tackles him very hard. The tackle deserves either a red, or a yellow card, but the player's shot goes in (ie. he scores but is left injured). In either situation, whether the tackling player deserves a red, or a yellow card, does the goal stand? Would an advantage be allowed in any case (red or yellow)? Does this apply to all outfield players and the goalkeeper or are there slightly different rules regarding the keeper (committing the foul)?
My thoughts would be since its a "dangerous" tackle, advantage should not be allowed, and the very second the tackle was made, the game stops immediately, therefore, the player who fouls receives a red/yellow card, and the fouled team get a freekick/penalty.
Alternatively, the goal stands and the player is not cautioned or sent off at all. One thing I thought definately shouldn't happen is for the goal to stand AND the player cautioned/sent off using the "advantage" rule. I thought this is not permitted since the game should immediately stop from the second a dangerous foul is committed, regardless of whether the subsequent shot ends up in goal or not.
Answer (February 11, 2009):
Yes, the goal stands, because the referee will sensibly have waited a moment or two to see what happens, applying the advantage but waiting that moment or so to see what happens before announcing it.
The same rules apply to goalkeeper and outfield players for such an infringement. Why would they differ?? In this case, if the referee decides that the tackle was excessive and that it was delivered with no intent to play the ball (e. g., late or from an angle opposite to the ball), then it is and should be reported as violent conduct. If the referee decides that the player was attempting to play the ball with excessive force, then it is and should be reported as serious foul play.
If there is a chance of a goal, the referee will wait that extra second or so to declare the decision already made: That the tackle was done with excessive force and is therefore serious foul play or violent conduct. The referee must NEVER take away a deserved goal, no matter that the player has been injured. If the ball does not enter the goal, the referee will stop play, send off the opposition player for serious foul play, and restart with a penalty kick or a direct free kick, whichever is correct for the place where the foul and serious misconduct took place.
The referee must make the decision as to what he or she will do at the moment the particular infringement occurs. That will not change for whatever else may happen after the infringement. In this case, the goal was scored and the rest follows automatically.
TOUCHING THE CORNER FLAG POST (OR GOALPOSTS)
There was a karate kick to the lower back of player in a Premiership game recently (Liverpool vs Chelsea). Transfer that scenario to USSF territory in our minds so you can comment on the happenings. The refs missed the kick, oops. The Liverpool player was holding the corner flag before the kick. Isn't that not allowed to hold the flag? Could this assault possibly be avoided by penalizing the Liverpool player for holding onto the corner flag? What level of play would that call be considered trifling?
Answer (February 7,
The referee in this game was most likely unable to see the play, but it occurred directly in front of the assistant referee. We need to remember that, just like the goalposts, the corner flagposts are considered to be part of the field. Players routinely make contact with both the goalposts and the flagposts. Doing so is not an infringement of the Laws. If you need a reference, see the USSF publication "Advice to Referees on the Laws of the Game," which says:
1.8 DEALING WITH APPURTENANCES TO THE FIELD AND OUTSIDE AGENTS
(a) Required appurtenances
These are the goals, corner flags, and flagposts required by Law 1. Contact between these appurtenances and the ball or players is a normal part of play and requires no special consideration in determining the restart.//rest snipped//
U.S. Soccer thanks Jim Allen (National Instructor Staff/National Assessor), assisted by Dan Heldman (National Instructor Staff), for their assistance in providing this service. Direction is provided by Alfred Kleinaitis, Manager of Referee Development and Education, with further assistance from Paul Tamberino, Director of Referee Development; David McKee, National Director of Assessment (assessment matters); and Ulrich Strom, National Instructor and National Assessor (matters in general).
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