IFAB Circular 7: Clarifying LOTG revisions

Still get some questions on the IFAB Circular 7. There was a big revision of the Laws of the Game before the 2016-2017 season, but not everything was clear yet. The IFAB has launched a document clarifying the LOTG revisions. I’ve linked to it, but not shared the whole text in a blog post yet.

You can download the copy from the IFAB website or read the most important changes below.

Logo IFABIFAB has written that future changes of the Laws of the Game will focus on “three important areas”:

  • Fairness and integrity
  • Universality and inclusion
  • The growth of technology

Unsporting behaviour

The ABM approved FIFA’s request to highlight two areas of unsporting behaviour which seem to be increasing: • At a goal kick, a defending player deliberately plays the ball before it has left the penalty area. • A player deliberately takes a throw-in so the ball does not enter the field of play. Often the player is deliberately attempting to waste time and knows that the throwin/goal kick will be retaken as the ball was not in play. Referees are asked to be vigilant and a player who deliberately attempts to waste time in these ways should be cautioned (yellow card, YC); due allowance must always be made for the time lost.

Clarifications to the Laws of the Game 2016/17

The IFAB has been asked to clarify, often for translation purposes, some parts of the Laws of the Game 2016/17. The wording for all these clarifications will form part of the proposals for the Laws of the Game 2017/18 which will be considered at the AGM. However, the ABM wishes to highlight the following important clarifications:

Law 5 – The Referee

If a team’s medical person is dismissed from the technical area, that person is still allowed to treat players if no another medical person is available.

Law 10 –Determining the outcome of a match

Kicks from the Penalty Mark

Offence by the kicker

If the kicker offends the kick is forfeited (recorded as ‘missed’).

Offence by goalkeeper and kicker

If both the goalkeeper and kicker offend: o if a goal is scored, the kicker is cautioned (YC) and the kick is recorded as ‘missed’. o if a goal is not scored, both players are cautioned and the kick is re-taken.

Law 12 – Fouls and misconduct

Indirect free kicks

Verbal/gesture offences are punished with an indirect free kick even if the player is cautioned (YC) or sent off (RC). The direct free kick for ‘offences against a match official’ is for direct physical offences (pushing, holding, striking etc.) and not verbal or gesture offences.

Sending-off offences

If, in the final stage of an attack, the attacker moves diagonally to go past a goalkeeper/defender an obvious goal-scoring opportunity still exists if the overall/general movement of the player was towards the opponent’s goal.

Denial of an obvious goal-scoring opportunity by entering the field of play

Any player, substitute or team official who enters the field of play without the required referee’s permission and prevents a goal or denies an obvious goal-scoring opportunity must be sent off, even if no other offence is committed.

Law 14 – The penalty kick

Offence by goalkeeper and kicker

If both the goalkeeper and kicker offend:

  • if a goal is scored, the kicker is cautioned (YC) and play is restarted with an indirect free kick to the defending team from the penalty mark.
  • if a goal is not scored, both players are cautioned and the kick is re-taken.

One Comment

  • Aaron Uribe

    The results of the Penalty Kick and the Kicks from the Mark when both the goalkeeper and kicker offend do not seem fair.

    First of all, if both teams offend, I would think it should always be a retake. But certainly, if the kicker manages to score, it should be a retake. I would only reward the offending goalkeeper if the kicker misses.

    But what if both goalkeeper and kicker offend, but the kick is saved directly as a result of the offense by the goalkeeper. How does this penalize the goalkeeper if he then gets an indirect kick going out?

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