Soccer Rule Referee Resources
Ask a Question
Recent Questions

Previous You-Call-It's

VAR (Video Assistant Referee)

Q&A Quick Search
The Field of Play
The Ball
The Players
The Players Equipment
The Referee
The Other Match Officials
The Duration of the Match
The Start and Restart of Play
The Ball In and Out of Play
Determining the Outcome of a Match
Fouls and Misconduct
Free Kicks
Penalty kick
Throw In
Goal Kick
Corner Kick

Common Sense
Kicks - Penalty Mark
The Technical Area
The Fourth Official
Attitude and Control
League Specific
High School

Common Acronyms
Meet The Ref
Contact AskTheRef
Help Wanted
About AskTheRef

Soccer Rules Changes 1580-2000

Panel Login

Soccer Referee Questions on Soccer Rules

Welcome to
a Soccer Law Question and Answer site. Providing answers to questions regarding soccer laws since October 11, 1999

To ask a question click Ask the Ref and pose your question and the panel will reply.

Those who have ideas or articles please feel free to contact the editor Richard Dawson at with suggestions.

Over the past 20 years we have amassed tens of thousands of questions & answers but the LOTG always change and/or portions no longer apply. Be SURE to reread the latest version IFAB 2020 - 2021 Laws of the Game.

You Call It!

After two years and many request - You Call It is back! Now it's your turn to test your knowledge in a scenario created by our panel of referees. If your answer is spot on we will publish it on our site! Good luck click here!

Kicks From The Penalty mark 11/22/2020

RE: Competitve Under 15

Ed Thomas of Winter Garden, FL United States asks...

I’d like to know your feedback on the Orlando vs New York City penalty shootout. Specifically, is VAR allowed to intervene when Orlando brings on their 6th sub (which in this case was the sub-keeper during the shootout)? And then for the actual red card, is it considered a clear and obvious mistake if we can barely tell if Gallese’s feet were in front of the line?...

Read The Full Q & A

Law 12 - Fouls and Misconduct 11/17/2020

RE: Under 16

Doug of Folsom, CA US asks...

"Hip Check"? - On the first foul here at 5 min ( w replay about 6:45, isn't this a hip check, not shoulder to shoulder? It was also a trip after the hip check, which may be the more important foul.
I saw a referee penalize hip instead of shoulder contact many years ago, and give a verbal warning about it, followed by a caution the next time (perhaps PI), but I do not see it penalized often.
Is the initial hip to hip contact with any momentum an unfair challenge by definition?
Thanks as always. /Doug...

Read The Full Q & A

Law 14 - The Penalty kick 11/13/2020

RE: Rec Adult

Brian Lutke of Whistler, BC Canada asks...

Very simply, during a penalty kick, can the goalkeeper move laterally along his goal line prior to the kick being taken (i.e. in an attempt to distract the penalty taker)?...

Read The Full Q & A

Law 12 - Fouls and Misconduct 11/12/2020

RE: HS, Adult

Bob Romano of Falls Church , Virginia USA asks...

The goalie commits a serious foul play off the field on an opponent’s attack and goalkeeper red carded. What is the restart considering the foul happened off the field of play...

Read The Full Q & A

Law 11 - Offside 11/11/2020

RE: Professional

gargy of Haifa, Israel Israel asks...


In one case, a player A of the attacking team is in offside position, making his run towards the goal.
His teammate B, plays the ball, trying to cross the ball forward, above the defense to player A in the offside position. The crossed ball gets to a defender's head, who try to clear the ball with his head, but he heads it immediately to the attacking player A in the offside position.

Should it be an offside, as player A was in offside position at the time the ball crossed forward by his teammate B? or the fact the defender headed the ball is enough to cancel the offside?

Thank you...

Read The Full Q & A

Law 12 - Fouls and Misconduct 11/10/2020

Petr of Prague, Czech Republic Czech Republic asks...


one situation please.

The ball hits first player's body (or head, or leg) and then his arm.

General questions:

It was not an offense before. How is it now after editing the rules? In which cases has this old view changed?

Specific questions:

I suspect these two situations.

1) the hand/arm has made their body unnaturally bigger

2) the hand/arm is above/beyond their shoulder level (unless the player
deliberately plays the ball which then touches their hand/arm)

In point 1) is not intentionality considered? The rules are not very clear:-)
Is there any new clarification from IFAB?

Thank you very much!...

Read The Full Q & A

High School 11/7/2020

RE: Competive High School

Bruce Moore of SF Bay Area, California USA asks...

First great site.

I'm trying to get a better understanding of defenders reaching in front of attackers to get and or take the ball away. Any insight from your team is Greatly Appreciated !

I have a youtube video that does a better job of explaining my question.

Please see the time at 5 minutes and replay at 6:48 no foul called, and another at 7:15 foul called.

Thanks in advanced for your site !...

Read The Full Q & A

Law 12 - Fouls and Misconduct 11/2/2020

RE: Pro College

Divyesh Lal of Doonside, NSW Australia asks...

Are you allowed to grab and hold during corners because I see this quite alot in the premier league and the champions league, also when does a shoulder-shoulder count as illegal because I've seen some pretty nasty ones this weekend in the arsenal vs united match...

Read The Full Q & A

High School 11/1/2020

RE: HS varsity High School

Ronald A Reed of High Bridge, New Jersey United States asks...

NFHS recently changed the drop rule. When dropping the ball to the defending goalie in the penalty area, can he/she pick up the ball???...

Read The Full Q & A

Law 12 - Fouls and Misconduct 11/1/2020

RE: Rec+Select Adult

Ian Thomas of Sarnia, Ontario Canada asks...

I recently watched a "Misplays of the Month" on Sportsnet, and one play caught my eye. I found the game later so I could reference it. Hartford Athletic vs Philadelphia Union II, score was tied 2-2, and a Hartford Athletic player, Danny Barrera redirected a ball that had just been released from the goalkeeper's hands less than a second prior, and it ended up scoring. I looked in the IFAB Laws of the Game, and under Law 12, Section 2, Fouls and Misconduct, Indirect Free Kick, it says: "An indirect free kick is awarded if a player prevents the goalkeeper from releasing the ball from the hands or kicks or attempts to kick the ball when the goalkeeper is in the process of releasing it." My judgement is that this goal should have been called bac...

Read The Full Q & A Educating and Amusing The Soccer Referee Since October 11, 1999

Soccer Referee Extras
Saturday, November 28, 2020

Recent Questions

Click Go to view all recently posted questions

VAR (Video Assistant Referee) Questions?

Learn about VAR (Video Assistant Referee)

Did you Ask the Ref? Find your answer here.

Enter Question Number

If you received a response regarding a submitted question enter your question number above to find the answer