When the ball touches match official and the referee scores a goal. This is added to the 2019-2020 Laws of the Game, but why? Because it really happens sometimes, as you can see in Dutch amateur football.
The referee has to allow the goal in this case, but what is the decision in 2019-2020? Read more about that below the video.
Reaction from the referee
The referee was very open about the situation above one day later in the media. Of course he felt terrible ‘and I am not proud of it’. He explains what happens. “As you can see on the footage, it was a messy situation for the goal. I am assuming that the ball is shot to the second post, but it is coming short. I am still trying to dodge the ball, but it touches my foot and went straight into the goal.”
At that moment he wants to disappear, as he knew he has to allow the goal. It went from 3-1 to 3-2 due to that goal and then it’s very important to stay focused as a referee. Luckily the goal did not influence the result, as the home team won with 4-2.
LOTG 2019-2020: when ball touches match official
Situations like this will not happen again in the next seasons. As you know there are a three reasons when the ball is out of play. Two are the common ones that have always been in the Laws of the Game:
- When the ball as wholly passed over the goal line or touchline on the ground or in the air
- Or when play has been stopped by the referee
But the third reason is new: when the ball touches a match official and remains on the field of play. Not in all cases, but the referee has to stop play if
- a team starts a promising attack or
- the ball goes directly into the goal or
- the team in possession of the ball changes
In all these cases, play is restarted with a dropped ball. But in 2019-2020 the LOTG mention a new way of restarting for a situation mentioned above …
Restart with dropped ball in penalty area
Because the ball is in the penalty area when touched by the referee, the restart is a little different now. The 2019-2020 Laws of the Game say:
“The ball is dropped for the defending team goalkeeper in their penalty area if, when play was stopped
- the ball was in the penalty area or
- the last touch of the ball was in the penalty area”
Thanks, Peter, for mentioning it in the comments.
(Below some personal experiences, feel free to share yours when you touched the ball by accident)
My personal case was a bit odd. I was following play on the left side of the field of play. Then the midfielder shot the ball at chest height and I had no chance to move away. If I wasn’t there, the ball would have gone out of play.
Because of my touch, the opposing team gets ball posession. They pass a few times and shoot on goal. An easy one, you think. But then the goalkeeper lets the ball slip through her fingers and a goal is scored. Even though there was no chance to move away from the ball, you feel sorry for the goal being scored.
What are your experiences with touching the ball?