This week we are going to look at two throw in were the assistant referee's positioning needs to be analyzed. Previously (Week #25) we pointed out the importance of assistant referee's keeping an eye on the throw in in relation to whether it was taken properly, especially in regards to the feet.
Overall in week #27 assistant referee performed well in all their matches, so we will go directly to Call of the Week #27 for three excellent decisions to choose from.
Throw-In Positioning - New England v Montreal
This throw-in puts the assistant referee in an awkward position since the ball is further down field that the second to last defender. Being in line with the ball would be the proper position to be in. However, it is always important to consider the next phase of play, or in other words, where will be the next decision that this assistant will need to make. His next decision most likely would be an offside decision coming from the first touch after the throw-in. Thus he is correct to jump to the second to last defender to be in position for that possible play. In the end this play does not result in any offside situation, however imagine if the first touch is a flick header to a player heading in towards goal, possibly ahead or even with the second to last defender. The AR would not have time to move from the spot of the throw-in to the STLD and make a decision from good position.
Usually proper position says an AR should be with the STLD or the ball whichever is nearest the goal line, in this case choosing the STLD is the better choice.
Throw-In Positioning - Vancouver v Real Salt Lake
In this case the assistant referee is put in an awkward position because he was trying to insure that the throw in was taken from the proper location. He gets caught when the attacker picks up the ball and takes the throw quickly, the second to last defender already well to the right of the AR.
Since the throw-in's location is somewhat flexible, the assistant referee needs to decide which is more important, their position or that of the throw-in. Almost always their position will be more important. It takes teamwork with the referee to make sure that the throw is taken from an acceptable position and it is recommended that the AR help in locating the throw from their position with the STLD, especially when the throw-in is being taken by the attacking team. It is more important that the assistant referee be ready for the phase of play coming from the throw than its location.
The decision to re-take a throw because it was taken from the wrong location is best left to the referee, with the assistant providing information thru the communication system. A flag from the assistant referee is only recommended when the throw is taken improperly or if one of the thrower's feet are completely on the field.
Winner - Call of the Week #26 - Corey Parker
Call of the Week # 27
Three excellent choices this week and two of them come from Eric Weisbrod in Chicago v NYRB. Both of his decision have multiple players involved that demand excellent concentration and patience to determine who might have interfered with play or not. We couldn't decide which of his two decisions was better, maybe you can. Sandwiched in between is Adam Wienckowski's decision that led to a goal for Toronto. The attacker moves from offside to onside position at the last moment at the same time as the second to last defender changes. You pick.