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Mastering the Offside Rule: Debunking common myths for youth soccer parents

Offside in Soccer (Football) Rule in Under 2 Minutes

The Offside rule can be confusing to players, parents and coaches alike. 

You are offside if:
·         You are in an offside position at the moment the ball touches or is played by one of your teammates
·         AND the referee determines that you are involved in active play
You are in an offside position if you are:
·         In your opponent’s half of the field
·         AND closer to your opponent’s goal line than the ball (i.e. you are in front of the ball)
·         AND closer to your opponent’s goal line than the second last defender (i.e. there must be two opponents between you and the goal line. The keeper may be one of these two opponents.)
Consideration is given to any part of the head, body or feet of the attacker. For this purpose arms are not considered.
You are involved in active play if you:
·         Gain an advantage by being in an offside position
·         OR interfere with play
·         OR interfere with an opponent
You are not offside if:
·         You are in your half of the field (i.e. the half your goalkeeper is on)
·         OR you are level with the ball
·         OR you are level with the second last opponent
·         OR you are level with the last two opponents
·         OR you receive the ball directly from a goal kick, throw-in or corner kick
o   Once the ball is touched after a goal kick/throw-in/corner kick, if the ball is played to a player in an offside position, offside may be called
o   Note: you can be offside if you receive the ball directly from a free kick)
The penalty for offside is an indirect free kick awarded to the opposing team at the place where the offside occurred.


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