Soccer Law 12
Soccer Law 12
Fouls and Misconduct
Fouls and misconduct are penalized as follows:
Direct Free Kick
A direct free kick is awarded to the opposing team if a player commits any of the following six offences in a manner considered by the referee to be careless, reckless or using excessive force:
- kicks or attempts to kick an opponent
- trips or attempts to trip an opponent
- jumps at an opponent
- charges an opponent
- strikes or attempts to strike an opponent
- pushes an opponent
A direct free kick is also awarded to the opposing team if a player
commits any of the following four offences:
- tackles an opponent to gain possession of the ball, making contact with the opponent before touching the ball
- holds an opponent
- spits at an opponent
- handles the ball deliberately (except for the goalkeeper within his own penalty area).
- A direct free kick is taken from where the offence occurred.
A penalty kick is awarded if any of the above ten offences is committed by a player inside his own penalty area, irrespective of the position of the ball, provided it is in play.
Indirect Free Kick
An indirect free kick is awarded to the opposing team if a goalkeeper, inside his own penalty area, commits any of the following four offences:
An indirect free kick is also awarded to the opposing team if a player, in the opinion of the referee:
- takes more than six seconds while controlling the ball with his hands before releasing it from his possession
- touches the ball again with his hands after it has been released from his possession and has not touched any other player
- touches the ball with his hands after it has been deliberately kicked to him by a teammate
- touches the ball with his hands after he has received it directly from a throw-in taken by a teammate.
An indirect free kick is taken from where the offence occurred.
- plays in a dangerous manner
- impedes the progress of an opponent
- prevents the goalkeeper from releasing the ball from his hands
- commits any other offence, not previously mentioned in Law 12, for which play is stopped to caution or dismiss a player.
Only a player or substitute or substituted player may be shown the red or yellow card.
The referee has the authority to take disciplinary sanctions, as from the moment he enters the field of play until he leaves the field of play after the final whistle.
A player is cautioned and shown the yellow card if he commits any of the following seven offences:
- is guilty of unsporting behavior
- shows dissent by word or action
- persistently infringes the Laws of the Game
- delays the restart of play
- fails to respect the required distance when play is restarted with a corner kick or free kick
- enters or re-enters the field of play without The Referee's permission
- deliberately leaves the field of play without The Referee's permission.
A player is sent off and shown the red card if he commits any of the following seven offences:
- is guilty of serious foul play
- is guilty of violent conduct
- spits at an opponent or any other person
- denies the opposing team a goal or an obvious goal scoring opportunity by deliberately handling the ball (this does not apply to a goalkeeper within his own penalty area)
- denies an obvious goal scoring opportunity to an opponent moving towards the player's goal by an offence punishable by a free kick or a penalty kick
- uses offensive or insulting or abusive language and/or gestures
- receives a second caution in the same match.
A player who has been sent off must leave the vicinity of the field of play and the technical area.
Decisions of the International F.A. Board
A player who commits a cautionable or sending-off offence, either on or off the field of play, whether directed towards an opponent, a team-mate, the referee, an assistant referee or any other person, is disciplined according to the nature of the offence committed.
The goalkeeper is considered to be in control of the ball by touching it with any part of his hand or arms. Possession of the ball includes the goalkeeper deliberately parrying the ball, but does not include the circumstances where, in the opinion of the referee, the ball rebounds accidentally from the goalkeeper, for example after he has made a save.
Subject to the terms of Law 12, a player may pass the ball to his own goalkeeper using his head or chest or knee, etc. If, however, in the opinion of the referee, a player uses a deliberate trick while the ball is in play in order to circumvent the Law, the player is guilty of unsporting behavior. He is cautioned, shown the yellow card and an indirect free kick is awarded to the opposing team from the place where the infringement occurred.
A player using a deliberate trick to circumvent the Law while he is taking a free kick is cautioned for unsporting behavior and shown the yellow card. The free kick is retaken. In such circumstances, it is irrelevant whether the goalkeeper subsequently touches the ball with his hands or not. The offence is committed by the player in attempting to circumvent both the letter and the spirit of Law 12.
A tackle, which endangers the safety of an opponent, must be sanctioned as serious foul play.
Any simulating action anywhere on the field, which is intended to deceive the referee, must be sanctioned as unsporting behavior.
Removing a jersey
- A player who removes his jersey when celebrating a goal must be cautioned for unsporting behavior.
- Removing a jersey after a goal has been scored is unnecessary and players must avoid such excessive displays of celebration.
- Removing a jersey is defined as removing the jersey over the head or covering the head with the jersey.
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