Major League Soccer
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Laws Of The Game

Law 13 - Free Kicks 

Types of free kick
Free kicks are either direct or indirect.

The direct free kick
Ball enters the goal

  • if a direct free kick is kicked directly into the opponents’ goal, a goal is awarded
  • if a direct free kick is kicked directly into the team’s own goal, a corner kick is awarded to the opposing team

if a direct free kick is kicked directly into the opponents’ goal, a goal is awarded

Indirect free kick
Signal

The referee indicates an indirect free kick by raising his arm above his head. He maintains his arm in that position until the kick has been taken and the ball has touched another player or goes out of play.

Ball enters the goal

A goal can be scored only if the ball subsequently touches another player before it enters the goal:

  • if an indirect free kick is kicked directly into the opponents' goal, a goal kick is awarded
  • if an indirect free kick is kicked directly into the team's own goal, a corner kick is awarded to the opposing team

Procedure
For both direct and indirect free kicks, the ball must be stationary when the kick is taken and the kicker must not touch the ball again until it has touched another player.

Position of free kick
Free kick inside the penalty area

Direct or indirect free kick to the defending team:

  • all opponents must be at least 9.15 m (10 yds) from the ball
  • all opponents must remain outside the penalty area until the ball is in play
  • the ball is in play when it is kicked directly out of the penalty area
  • a free kick awarded in the goal area may be taken from any point inside that area

Indirect free kick to the attacking team:

  • all opponents must be at least 9.15 m (10 yds) from the ball until it is in play, unless they are on their own goal line between the goalposts
  • the ball is in play when it is kicked and moves
  • an indirect free kick awarded inside the goal area must be taken on the goal area line parallel to the goal line at the point nearest to where the infringement occurred

Free kick outside the penalty area

  • all opponents must be at least 9.15 m (10 yds) from the ball until it is in play
  • the ball is in play when it is kicked and moves
  • the free kick is taken from the place where the infringement occurred or from the position of the ball when the infringement occurred (according to the infringement)

Infringements and sanctions
If, when a free kick is taken, an opponent is closer to the ball than the required distance:

  • the kick is retaken

If, when a free kick is taken by the defending team from inside its own penalty area, the ball is not kicked directly out of the penalty area:

  • the kick is retaken

Free kick taken by a player other than the goalkeeper

If, after the ball is in play, the kicker touches the ball again (except with his hands) before it has touched another player:

  • an indirect free kick is awarded to the opposing team, to be taken from the place where the infringement occurred (see Law 13 - Position of free kick)

If, after the ball is in play, the kicker deliberately handles the ball before it has touched another player:

  • a direct free kick is awarded to the opposing team, to be taken from the place where the infringement occurred (see Law 13 - Position of free kick)
  • a penalty kick is awarded if the infringement occurred inside the kicker's penalty area

Free kick taken by the goalkeeper

If, after the ball is in play, the goalkeeper touches the ball again (except with his hands), before it has touched another player:

  • an indirect free kick is awarded to the opposing team, to be taken from the place where the infringement occurred (see Law 13 - Position of free kick)

If, after the ball is in play, the goalkeeper deliberately handles the ball before it has touched another player:

  • a direct free kick is awarded to the opposing team if the infringement occurred outside the goalkeeper's penalty area, to be taken from the place where the infringement occurred (see Law 13 - Position of free kick)
  • an indirect free kick is awarded to the opposing team if the infringement occurred inside the goalkeeper's penalty area, to be taken from the place where the infringement occurred (see Law 13 - Position of free kick)

Source: FIFA.com



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