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Quarryref

Active Member
Level 3 Referee
I'm sorry but I have to disagree. This is, as @cwyeary mentioned, a substantial change in how we're supposed to judge a deliberate play.

Just consider the following wording from this "clarification":



(Emphasis mine).

For many years now, there has been no hint of the player having to have actual control of the ball, for it to be considered a deliberate play.

The part about having the possibility to pass, gain possession of, or clear the ball is also brand new.

Previously, so long as the player made contact with the ball in any way that looked like they intended to play the ball, that was considered a deliberate play. Whether the player established control of the ball or ended up with the possibility of doing something useful with it, was wholly irrelevant.

As others have said, there were a large number of incidents in recent seasons where the ball skimmed off the head or leg of a defender who was never remotely close to controlling the ball, gaining possession, passing or clearing it and that was considered a deliberate play. Examples have been given above.

Now, virtually all of those incidents, if they occurred in the coming season(s) would result in an offside call.

For me, this is a major change and the IFAB trying to disguise it as a mere clarification is somewhat disingenuous.
100% this is a major change and it often applies to KMIs

In fact it changes a call I made on a pre-season line only 2 weeks ago where I kept my flag down.

The good news is that whilst I was correct under the old guidance, from a 'what football wants' perspective, I'm pretty sure everyone in the ground would have preferred the flag - and plenty in the crowd thought I was wrong anyway & weren't shy in sharing their views.

Let's also be clear though, there is now a big subjective area & at some point this one is going to cause consternation this season
 

GraemeS

RefChat Addict
Level 5 Referee
Why was this sub clause originally put in anyway? When the ball leaves the attackers foot and the intended pass is to the player in an offside position what's the inbetween player got to do with it?

After all we're told 'was he in an offside position when the ball was kicked?' That's the consideration for 99% of the decisions but oh no they had to introduce this stupid sub clause and make everything 10 times harder.

The game wouldn't suffer at all if they removed this 'deliberately played' bit and reverted back to where was the attacker when the ball was passed to him.
If "flicking the shoelaces" is one end of the scale, consider the other end - player who takes control of the ball, turns, plays a pass back to the GK that is then intercepted by the "offside" player. We talk about what football expects, and it certainly doesn't expect that to be given as offside.

So you need a clause in there that describes how a defender playing the ball means previously-offside attackers are not to be considered offside any more. All perfectly logical so far, but it falls down at the point where a ridiculously loose definition is then set up for what "playing" the ball can be. Hence this law change clarification, to tighten that definition a bit and remove some of the less controlled "plays" on the ball from the resetting offside definition.
 

JamesL

RefChat Addict
Level 3 Referee
The problem as I see it is the infamous glossary.
And why the wording is at odds with the guidance and some of these clarifications.

"Deliberate
An action which the player intended/meant to make; it is not a ‘reflex’ or
unintended reaction"

"Play - an action which makes contact with the ball."

The issue arises from prefixing that word, with that definition, with deliberate and it's definition.

In the clip above, that is now an offside offence, how can we say that this action making contact with the ball is not deliberate?

A law change is needed here imo to reconcile the language used in the Lotg with the expected outcomes in these situations.

We are in very dangerous territory again here with who actually sees this clarification. It's going to be a lottery with ARs who are up to speed and those who are still working to what the laws actually say
 

Redster

Well-Known Member
I must say, I'm minded to just stick to the Laws. All if the videos are dependant on their circumstances and the written clarification is less than helpful, in my view.

It's much easier to point to the LOTG and glossary than to some vague circular
 

Viridis1886

I don't care if you got the ball...
Level 7 Referee
It's much easier to point to the LOTG and glossary than to some vague circular
An interesting point that had me wondering how this is normally communicated to the refereeing community.

I'm only just starting out and found out about this change via this forum. How does everyone else find out? (I'm making the rash assumption that not every referee in the country/world is a member of the forum.)

Would this normally be shared via CFAs or their equivalent?
 
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santa sangria

RefChat Addict
Number 8 i get - limited contact.

But please clip number 11 - I don’t get this - the free kick - the defender jumps well, has time, not quite high enough, good contact on the ball, back header, kind of thing you see at the far post, why is this not a deliberate play?

Help!

Really, limited contact? If so that is a massive advantage to defenders… am I missing something?
 

OIREF!

RefChat Addict
But please clip number 11 - I don’t get this - the free kick - the defender jumps well, has time, not quite high enough, good contact on the ball, back header, kind of thing you see at the far post, why is this not a deliberate play?
100% agree in this Clip 11, considering all the clips this was towards the top end of the deliberate scale for me. Defender under no real pressure and doing exactly what 'football expects' him to do in such a situation ie get up and get his head to the ball.
 

socal lurker

RefChat Addict
The problem as I see it is the infamous glossary.
And why the wording is at odds with the guidance and some of these clarifications.

"Deliberate
An action which the player intended/meant to make; it is not a ‘reflex’ or
unintended reaction"

"Play - an action which makes contact with the ball."

The issue arises from prefixing that word, with that definition, with deliberate and it's definition.

In the clip above, that is now an offside offence, how can we say that this action making contact with the ball is not deliberate?

A law change is needed here imo to reconcile the language used in the Lotg with the expected outcomes in these situations.

We are in very dangerous territory again here with who actually sees this clarification. It's going to be a lottery with ARs who are up to speed and those who are still working to what the laws actually say
It's not the first time that interpretations preceded making the Laws match the interpretations . . .
 

lesbobly

New Member
I thought the old reasoning, even if unfair for defenders, was at least managable for referees. Now we'll have to make distinctions between what we can expect a certain level of footballer to find an easy or difficult ball to challenge for or control. I'll stick with some of the old reasoning for now until there's some more clarification although obviously deflection has become a bit broader
😂👍 tbf before you can begin to decide if (at “that” level) the player was finding it difficult or easy, you might have to use your mind reading powers first to “see” if that was indeed the intention … 🤔 ..: maybe … or not …
 

DJIC

New Member
An interesting point that had me wondering how this is normally communicated to the refereeing community.

I'm only just starting out abs and found out about this change via this forum. How does everyone else find out? (I'm making the rash assumption that not every referee in the country/world is a member of the forum.)

Would this normally be shared via CFAs or their equivalent?
Very valid point, inconsistency guaranteed. Our Step 5 pre-season AR meeting already held, opportunity missed to include this guidance/clarification. Should IFAB not have published this sooner?
 

socal lurker

RefChat Addict
Very valid point, inconsistency guaranteed. Our Step 5 pre-season AR meeting already held, opportunity missed to include this guidance/clarification. Should IFAB not have published this sooner?
As if we had consistency now . . . how many ARs/Refs still flag/whistle before there is involvement?*

*yes, I’m well aware of the specific exception when it is proper to call before the involvement actually occurs, and that’s not what I’m talking about
 
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