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  #1 (permalink)  
Old Fri Oct 08, 2004, 12:34am
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Would it be easier for the referee team (obviously, especially for the assistant referee) to call an offside violation, if being in an offside position were defined as being ahead of the ball and being closer to the goal-line than all opponents (defenders), exclusive of the goalkeeper? In other words, take the goalkeeper completely out of the equation, and only require the attacker to be even with or farther from the goal-line than any (one) defender to not be offside. This would make the offside call easier and more accurate when there are a lot of players bunched in the penalty area or near to the goal, for example, on a corner kick, and the goalkeeper rushes out several yards from the goal-line, possibly putting one or more attacking players offside who one second ago were not offside. With all the player movement and congestion so close to the goal, and the ball sometimes being played in quick succession by two or more players, and the keeper hidden in the middle, this can be difficult for the assistant to call accurately from the touchline 30 to 40 yards away. If an attacking player only has to have one defender closer to goal, the rule is simplified, fairer and easier to call. Simply let the goalkeeper move anywhere he/she pleases during the course of play and ignore the keeper for the purposes of calling an offside.
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Old Fri Oct 08, 2004, 08:56am
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To answer your question in short – no it would not be easier to call offside with your proposal.

The Laws of the Game do not specifically state that the GK has to be one of the 2 defenders between the attacker and the goal line for the offside determination – it is the 2nd to last defender. The GK can already go wherever he/she pleases during the course of play. The GK is required to wear a different jersey than his/her mates due to the added feature of hand usage in the penalty area, not to differentiate the position as only being able to play in a certain area.

How would your suggestion make the call easier and more accurate? In my experience the situation you describe where players are bunched up near the goal is actually one of the easier offside calls. The harder ones are the long balls from a fullback, stopper or sweeper to a rushing wing or forward weaving along the offside line.

Here are a couple of other points that crossed my mind while pondering your proposal:
1. Why would you want to lessen the GK role in the game like that? When you say “If an attacking player only has to have one defender closer to goal”, what would you now call the GK? Further in a practical sense your suggestion would relegate the GK to the penalty area only and most of the time the goal area. That is a great disservice to the players who happen to be GKs.

2. Why would you want to take the skill of the attackers out of the game? The current rule allows for skill and tactics to rule the day. Your proposal would make for many more breakaway goals and lead to a decrease in buildups in the offensive third. Quick passing buildup attacks are awesome soccer – it would be a shame to lessen that aspect of the game and turn the game into a track meet.

3. I think your suggestion would increase confusion rather than decrease it. Right now when I am an AR all I have to do is count bodies. With your proposal I would have to count and then possibly subtract – one more thing to do in some cases where there is lots of stuff to concentrate on to make the right call. When there are bodies bunched your suggestion would seem to make it even harder to get the call right.

4. The main job of an AR is to monitor the offside line. If the AR is in proper position (granted not always a given) then the offside determination is usually done well.

5. The offside judgement is just that – a judgement. Sometimes this involves actions that are 30, 40 or 50 yards apart. If your objective is to make the call easier than decreasing this distance is where I would start. The old NASL had a 35 yard offside line instead of using midfield. That would make offside a lot easier to call as an AR would only have to be concerned with 35 yards of field for offside instead of 120 on a max layout.
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Old Fri Oct 08, 2004, 09:22am
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I would go one step further. I would get rid of the off-side rule completely. It does nothing for the game except to protect a team whose defense has been beaten by the offense.

MTD, Sr.
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Old Fri Oct 08, 2004, 10:55am
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As a coach and a ref it makes me think.

So what happens....

I would obviously leave 1 big player with solid touch in the box, moving around. This would force the other coach to leave two players back. The other coach does the same thing.

So now there are 4 players in each box, and 14 left on the field. Since we are at even number, and if the field has any size, then play through the middle is liekly a bit quicker without as many players and transision from one side to the other goes faster.

I instruct my player to stand on the goal line IN the goal. He cannot obstruct, but he is allowed his space. And he is marked by anothe rplayer and the goalie. Starts to get pretty crowded. Plus, anytime the ball gets near the offesnive end, it essentially turns into a corner kick set up.

How would you read it occuring?

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Old Fri Oct 08, 2004, 11:48am
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Quote:
Originally posted by Mark T. DeNucci, Sr.
I would go one step further. I would get rid of the off-side rule completely. It does nothing for the game except to protect a team whose defense has been beaten by the offense.

MTD, Sr.
I could go for that, but I'm sure we are defiling some ancient god of soccer.

BTW, visibility of offside with a crowd in the goal area is most difficult in the diagonal system. For that matter, visibility of anything with a crowd in the goal area.
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Old Fri Oct 08, 2004, 02:26pm
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Quote:
Originally posted by Mark T. DeNucci, Sr.
I would go one step further. I would get rid of the off-side rule completely. It does nothing for the game except to protect a team whose defense has been beaten by the offense.

MTD, Sr.
Except, of course, for coaches who like to use the offside rule to keep the offense pushed out. My players work hard on keeping their line. It's not their fault that the offense can't count to two !

John
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Old Fri Oct 08, 2004, 02:49pm
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Quote:
Originally posted by jprideaux
Quote:
Originally posted by Mark T. DeNucci, Sr.
I would go one step further. I would get rid of the off-side rule completely. It does nothing for the game except to protect a team whose defense has been beaten by the offense.

MTD, Sr.
Except, of course, for coaches who like to use the offside rule to keep the offense pushed out. My players work hard on keeping their line. It's not their fault that the offense can't count to two !

John

John:

I have to disagree with you. It is not hard to hold a line. But it is good defense to guard another player. As Cecil said in an earlier post, doing away with offsides would go against something the ancient gods of soccer would abhor. But I think that the offsides rule is out-dated and will eventually go the way of rotary dial telephone. I only hope that I will live to see the demise of the three-second violation in basketball.

MTD, Sr.
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Trumbull Co. (Warren, Ohio) Bkb. Off. Assn.
Wood Co. (Bowling Green, Ohio) Bkb. Off. Assn.
Ohio Assn. of Basketball Officials
Ohio High School Athletic Association
International Assn. of Approved Bkb. Officials
Toledo, Ohio
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Old Fri Oct 08, 2004, 03:36pm
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Just watch the NBA.
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  #9 (permalink)  
Old Fri Oct 08, 2004, 05:29pm
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NO way!

Shaq should be allowed to camp 1 foot from the front of the rim! Does not make for pretty ball. As if we did not have enough trouble getting kids to learn to shoot.
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  #10 (permalink)  
Old Sun Oct 10, 2004, 04:30pm
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offside rule made easier

Responding to Lawfiveguy, the proposed change would have no impact on the way offside is called whenever the goalkeeper is the closest defender to the goal-line. In that case, the attacker who is ahead of the ball simply keeps himself onside by staying even with or behind the second to last defender (that is, behind any other defensive player on the field, since the keeper always counts as the second defender when the GK is closest to the goal, by the current rule). The proposed change would make it easier to call the offside violation and to recognize offside whenever the keeper has moved out from the goal-line and is no longer the closest defender to goal, because the AR would not have to count 2 defending bodies who are even with or closer to goal than an attacker, but only make sure that at the moment the ball was touched or played by a teammate of the attacker, the right color jersey of any single defender was closer to goal than any offensive players involved in play. It seems much fairer and more sporting to me NOT to consider an attacking player offside when there is any defensive field player closer to the goal-line than that attacking player.
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  #11 (permalink)  
Old Mon Oct 11, 2004, 09:12am
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Quote:
Originally posted by Mark T. DeNucci, Sr.
Quote:
Originally posted by jprideaux
Quote:
Originally posted by Mark T. DeNucci, Sr.
I would go one step further. I would get rid of the off-side rule completely. It does nothing for the game except to protect a team whose defense has been beaten by the offense.

MTD, Sr.
Except, of course, for coaches who like to use the offside rule to keep the offense pushed out. My players work hard on keeping their line. It's not their fault that the offense can't count to two !

John

John:

I have to disagree with you. It is not hard to hold a line. But it is good defense to guard another player. As Cecil said in an earlier post, doing away with offsides would go against something the ancient gods of soccer would abhor. But I think that the offsides rule is out-dated and will eventually go the way of rotary dial telephone. I only hope that I will live to see the demise of the three-second violation in basketball.

MTD, Sr.
OTOH, it's really easy to play offense when you can get in behind the defense whenever you want. Eliminating the offside rule would result in a large increase in garbage goals collected by big, strong players who just camp out in front of the goal waiting for the ball to come to them (which is pretty much what the three-second rule in basketball was designed to prevent). If you want lots of goals, get rid of offside. But I think you would be trading quality of goals for quantity.

John
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Old Wed Dec 08, 2004, 10:00am
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Getting rid of offsides would lower the amount of scoring in my opinion. Now, I cannot bring my defenders forward in the attack (up to the half line) and they must hang back by any strikers who happen to press forward like they should. The worst case scenario is a game breaking down in to 11 one-on-one matchups with everyone marking their one man, too afraid to press foward because there's nothing left to protect them. The offsides rule does hinder some attacks, but it is sort of needed. If there was a way to write the law which would not penalize runs that are made with slightly-less than perfect timing, but not allow cherry pickers, I think that would be best.

And the suggestion about the rule is ludicrous. There are plenty of keepers who start attacks, take free kicks or corners, or leave their area regularly. They are players. Removing them from the offsides rule makes them second-class citizens.
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