NOVA-CL Adopts New FIFA Rules

In Rules by Steve Jarriel

FIFA rolled out big changes to the Laws of the Game in 2019, and now that most soccer psychos like us are aware of the new rules, NOVA-CL soccer will now follow them for all matches effective with the start of the 2020 season.

The summaries below are drawn from an excellent, detailed post on the rule changes published on Goal, a soccer news website

Coin Toss

From 2019-20 on, the team that wins the coin toss has a choice of picking which half to attack or to take first kick-off.

Goal Kicks

Previously, the ball was deemed ‘dead’ until it left the penalty area, but a new change means that the ball is in play as soon as it is touched and it can be played inside the 18-yard box. Opposition players are still not allowed in the box until the ball is played.

Sideline Players May Be Carded

Not like “carded” to get into the VIP lounge. To clamp down on difficult behavior from players who don’t see eye to eye with the referee or their opposite number, officials will be able to show them yellow or red cards, in the same way they do with players.

Walls During Free Kicks

Attacking players – meaning those from the team on attacking from the free kick – are no longer allowed to stand within the defensive wall. Specifically, when there is a wall of three or more defenders, attackers are not allowed within one a yard of it.

Hand Balls

Read this post at NBC Sports Soccer on how hand balls are called. It’s one of the most misunderstood rules, even for veteran players.

  • No goal is awarded if the ball goes into the goal after accidentally touching an attacking player’s hand/arm.
  • However, if a player has accidentally handles the ball and creates an advantage or subsequently scores, the opposing team is awarded a free kick.
Restarts After Free-Kicks

Quick free-kicks can now be taken before a referee shows a yellow card, and the referee is allowed to wait before showing his yellow card until the next stoppage in play.

Goalie Position on Penalty Kicks

When a penalty kick is taken, the new rule says that the goalkeeper must have at least part of one foot on or in line with the goal-line.

Player Substitutions

Players who are being taken off and replaced must now leave the pitch by the nearest point on the touchline, which means we will no longer be forced to endure slow walks to the half-way line.