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This weeks Newsletter - Grand Finals!!!!

Paddy's News Issue 25



The new Offside Rule.



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New Offside Rule

The Offside Rule and the new IFAB clarification.


Recently the IFAB (International Football Association Board) has reviewed the meaning and interpretation of the offside rule.

The IFAB, of course, are the guardians of the Laws of the game  based in Zurich, Switzerland.


Although the wording of the Law has not changed, the meaning of active play,  interfering and gaining an advantage has been further defined.


This is Law 11- Offside in the Laws Of The Game (LOTG).

Offside Position

It is not an offence in itself to be in an offside position 

A player is in an offside position if:

- he is nearer to their opponents goal line than both the ball and the second-last opponent

A player is not in an offside position if:

- he is in his own half of the field of play or

- he is level with the second last opponent or

- he is level with the last two opponents



A player in an offside position is only penalised if, at the moment the ball touches or is played by one of his team,

he is, in the opinion of the referee, involved in active play by:

- interfering with play or

- interfering with an opponent

- gaining an advantage by being in that position


No Offence

There is no offside offence if a player receives the ball directly from:

- a goal kick

- a throw-in

- a corner kick


Straight forward...!


This is probably the most confusing and contentious of all the Laws.

Players and in some cases inexperienced officials get it wrong.

Simply, if you are in an offside position when your team mate plays the ball to you, or heads it to you, or uses their body to give you the ball, and you intefere or gain an advantage then you will be penalised for offside.

Interfere with play means: you touch the ball

Interfere with an opponent means: obstruct an opponent or block their line of vision.

Gaining an advantage means - receiving the ball from a save or deflection from the goal-posts or crossbar or goal-keeper or opponent.


The new IFAB clarification is focused on interfering with an opponent and the gaining an advanatge.

Interfering with an opponent has been further defined to include.

A player in an offside position shall be penalised if he:

- clearly attempts to play a ball which is close to him when this action impacts on an opponent

If you clearly attempt and are close to the ball and you impact the opponent's ability to play the ball, you will be penalised.

The word impact includes situations where an opponent's movement to the play ball is delayed, hindered, prevented or forced by the offside player.


Gaining an advantage has been further defined.

A player in an offside position shall be penalised if he:

gains an advantage by being in that position means playing a ball

1. that rebounds or is deflected to him off the goalpost, cossbar or an opponent having been in an offside position

2. that rebounds, is deflected or is played to him from a deliberate save by an opponent having been in an offside position.

If there is shot at goal and you have been in an offside position and you receive the ball from a save, rebound or deflection, you will be penalised.

A player in an offside position receiving the ball from an opponent who delberately plays the ball (except from a deliberate save) is not considered to have gained an advantage.

The opponent can be any player and not limited to the goalkeeper.

A save is when a player stops the ball which is going into or close to the goal with any part of his body except his hands (except for the goalkeeper within his own penalty area).


Again straight-forward...!


What the referee (more so the Assistant Referee) and players have to consider is:

- has their been a shot at goal or is it normal play

- clearly attempt + close + impact


Hopefully, this has cleared any confusion in your understanding of the Offside rule.


Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions. I will be at the club most training nights.






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