This week is all about the boundary lines, especially the one between the goal posts. It seems in the last couple of weeks PRO assistant referees have had to judge whether the ball has wholly crossed the goal line more than usual. For this situation there is no substitute for being perfectly positioned on the goal line itself, which, depending on the speed of the play can be nearly impossible for even the fasted AR. That is why we continually emphasize a high work rate, following back passes and sprinting towards the goal line on every shot.
If you look at this simple photo of a ball sitting on the goal line it appears to be in, however the second photo shows the same ball but with a perfectly in line view, this is not a goal. We are talking about a distance of about two yards. This is why we also ask the assistant referees not guess when making this type of decision, maybe one of the hardest pressure packed decision an assistant will make during any game.
Close...But Not in
These are the best angles available, but even then it is pretty clear that these are not goals. However, look at the position of the AR at the moment he has to make a judgement. Can they make a credible decision from that position? or will they simply be guessing? If you are not sure you need to let play continue.
In the New England match, the assistant referee can move quick enough to be on the goal line, in Portland, impossible.
You Be The Judge
Here are four very recent goal line decisions where the keepers or defenders have saved? the ball from crossing the line. The AR kept the flag down for two of them. Using the best angles available, has the ball completely crossed the line...all 27 inches? Could the AR have seen that the ball has crossed?
Really? The AR Can See This?
Watch this clip with the assistant referee's view in mind. Although perfectly positioned on the goal line, the defender's and goalkeeper's bodies are screening the ball. Can an AR credibly see that the whole of the ball has crossed the goal line? If he cannot see it, play should continue.
Yes, That's a Goal
For once we have almost perfect angle to see this correct decision, easy with the replay and the slow motion. Note the position of the AR, just one step from the corner flag. This position, plus having the ball bounce near the pole allows the AR to make a credible decision as he can clearly see the whole of the ball has crossed the line. For all of you that think this is an easy decision, you need to view it in real time.
Last Week's - Is this Offside?
Is this offside? Very split, with a bare minimum (54%) voting for offside.
It is our opinion that this is offside. The offside positioned attacker that allows the ball to go thru his legs is very close to the goalkeeper, he does make a movement (play) on the ball, and that play impacts the goalkeeper who you can see stutters (although slight) in his reaction to the ball.
This is not an easy call to make and whether you agree or not, the referee crew should be congratulated for using proper mechanics to make their decision.
Best Offside Call of the Week
As we do weekly, we highlight two very good decision made by PRO assistant referees. Who had the better call, you decide. Last week's favorite was Adam Wienckowski.