Bizarre! Encroachment during kicks from the penalty mark makes this one of craziest series to watch

Encroachment during kicks from the penalty mark led to one of the craziest penalty series to watch. One team thought they won, but a retake was ordered. Because of encroachment a goalkeeper was sent to the dressing rooms. And one team cheered so intense after a save, you might think the game was over, but wasn’t yet. In this blog post everything explained on how to handle as a referee.

But first of all, have a look at the clip yourself. Get a pen and paper and write down what you notice in the kicks from the penalty mark. What events or decisions stand out for you?

TIPWant: more videos? Then check the videos in this case study about “Goalkeepers and penalty kicks”.

Incidents during the penalty kicks

At 2 mins and 18 seconds in the highlights the penalty shootout starts. During the first few shots, nothing interesting happened for referees. These were regular goals or misses. But then it all starts to become interesting when Orlando City goalkeeper Pedro Gallese saves a penalty kick.

For referees the moment the kicker touches the ball is crucial. At that moment you have to see if the goalkeeper was off his line. In this case the answer is yes. This was spotted by the on-field officials, says PRO in a statement.

Encroachment during kicks from the penalty mark

LOTG: encroachment during kicks from the penalty mark

But how to handle with encroachment during kicks from the penalty mark? Because MLS started early 2020, before the 2020-2021 LOTG changes took place, the goalkeeper receives a yellow card immediately. It was his second, so the goalkeepre is correctly sent off.

More about the following events below, but first a short explanation how YOU need to handle now.

The current Laws of the Game say how you need to handle for matches that are played with the 2020-2021 laws. First of all: keep in mind that “warnings and cautions issued during the match are not carried forward into kicks from the penalty mark.”

Secondly, the laws mention another interesting thing. “If the goalkeeper commits an offence and, as a result, the kick is retaken, the goalkeeper is warned for the first offence and cautioned for any subsequent offence(s)”

In this situation this means that the goalkeeper would have received a verbal warning for this action and the kick was retaken.

The goalkeeper substitution

If you watch the clip you do see the 4th official with a substitution board during the kicks from the penalty mark. But that is not the correct procedure, even if the team has not used all its allocated substitutions. The laws say that “a goalkeeper who is sent off must be replaced by an eligible player”.

Lesson: be very alert and keep track of your own administration well

So the goalkeeper was not replaced and a player was on the goal-line. That player saves one of the kicks and he cheers so enthusiastically, so you might think the game was over. But who initially started the kicks from the penalty mark? Did you realise this immediately when watching the video?

Yes, it was their team. So the score was still equal, but they had one opportunity to shoot and when that ball goes in, they had won. It did.

It shows how important it is for referees to keep track of the people who have taken the kick and which team started. Some people argue that the ABBA penalty system was confusing, but you also need to be alert with normal penalty series. Allen Chapman was and ordered the last kick to be taken, well done.

Case study: goalkeepers and penalty kicks

Curious to learn more about the role of goalkeepers, encroachment during kicks from the penalty mark or regular PK’s? Then watch the videos in this case study about “Goalkeepers and penalty kicks”.


  • Ashish S.

    Jan: thanks for highlighting this bizarre series of incidents in MLS. While Alan Chapman and his crew ultimately made all the correct decisions (e.g., caution and send off to Orlando City GK under 2019-2020 IFAB LOTG, refusal to allow substitute keeper who was not an “eligible” player, and requiring the final Orlando City FC shooter before calling the match) the biggest criticism most have is the management of the match.

    The backup keeper was initially allowed on the pitch and stood on the goal line for five minutes before Chapman and crew determined he could not come on the pitch. Moreover, the backup GK came on a SECOND time, only to be told to leave again.

    If you watch and listen to the replay of the field player’s save, Chapman also blew the whistle to indicate the end of the match despite another penalty to be taken by Orlando City.

    While I have officiated for 20+ years at the grassroots level, I am not a professional and have not faced the pressure he has faced. Nonetheless, self evaluation after this match (from the fourth official not knowing the law regarding substitutions and KFPM to Chapman losing concentration and calling the game early), I have to imagine this will be Chapman and 4th official Marco DeOliveira’s only playoff appointments this year.

    • Jan ter Harmsel

      Thanks for the comment, Ashish.

      From what I’ve read, mr. Chapman will not get another playoff game. It’s, whatever level you officiate at, always good to do self-evaluation after each game. That’s where people benefit from the most and that’s when you get bettter each time.

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