Water bottle goal: correct or not? You might think: a what? Here’s the match situation that happened recently in the game between Twente and Zwolle.
Jason Cabral, a FC Twente player, receives the ball on the right side. He dribbles to the edge of the penalty area and curves the ball towards the goal. In the picture below you see the moment he’s going the shoot. Watch the circle right before the goal-line.
Yes, it’s a water bottle from the goalie. How would you try to avoid externa materials being on the football pitch? A water bottle lying low on the ground would be difficult to spot by the assistant referee.
But what if the ball touches the object on the pitch? That’s how this situation continues. Cabral’s shot bumps via the water bottle into the goal. Is that allowed?
In the football rules the so-called outside agent is only mentioned as a person: “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.”
But is that all there is about such situations? No, reading the “Powers and duties” of the referee gives the solution: “If an extra ball, other object or animal enters the field of play during the match, the referee must stop the match only if it interferes with play. Play must be restarted by a dropped ball from the position of the match ball when play was stopped, unless play was stopped inside the goal area, in which case the referee drops the ball on the goal area line parallel to the goal line at the point
nearest to where the ball was located when play was stopped.”
Below you’ll see a screenshot of that. The video was not embeddable, but you can see it on Fox Sports NL.
So every referee needs to whistle if an object does interfere with play according to the Laws of the Game.
But given the fact the ball would have gone in anyway and there was no protest whatsoever from any player, wouldn’t it be smarter to use some common sense and allow the goal to stand? The referee of the game did allow the goal, but I don’t know if that is because he has not seen it or if he uses “Law 18”, some common sense.
What would you decide if you spotted the ball touched the water battle? Would you allow the water bottle goal?