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Play of the Week 7: DOGSO Law change - Handball

April 19, 2017

By PRO Training & Development Manager Paul Rejer 

In Play of the Week 6 we examined how the new law change affected fouls inside the penalty area when there is an attempt to play the ball. In Play of the Week 7, we are discussing an offense that is not affected by the new change – handball.

For all handball DOGSO offenses, irrespective of where they occur, there is no change.

Deliberately handling the ball is not part of a ‘normal’ attempt to challenge an opponent for the ball, so for all DOGSO handball offenses, inside and outside the penalty area, the player will be sent off (red card).

This play is from the Colorado Rapids versus Real Salt Lake, Rocky Mountain rivalry game. 

The ball comes off the Rapids’ crossbar to the feet of RSL’s Chris Wingert, whose shot on goal is stopped by the arm of Colorado's Jared Watts. 

From a good viewing angle, referee Ismail Elfath immediately and confidently points to the spot. He knows that Watts is guilty of denial of a goal (DOG) and correctly brandishes a red card to him. 

So, in summary:

- The change in the DOGSO wording in Law 12 does not mean that every DOGSO offence in the penalty area is sanctioned with a caution (yellow card), as in Play of the Week 6.

- Where there is clearly no attempt to play the ball, or challenge an opponent for the ball – especially holding, pulling, pushing and handball – the sanction remains a sending off (red card).

In the clip, we see a nice moment when Watts, who appears resigned to his fate, is shown empathy by referee Elfath, placing an arm on his shoulder in reassurance. Who says referees don’t have a heart?!

Play of the Week: Click here to read more educational material from Paul Rejer


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