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Should handball have to be deliberate to be penalised?


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I was going to put this in the Euros thread but didn’t want to risk dragging it off topic.

As the title suggests, should intent be needed for handball to result in a free kick/penalty?

If so, why the difference between this and other ‘fouls’ where intent is not required?*

* ie. tripping an opponent is an offence even if done so accidentally. 

 

 

Edited by wilsdenrover
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It's not even up for debate, yes of course it should.

Sad to see players who have resorted to putting their hands behind their back every time the ball is in the box, it shouldn't have to be like that.

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Yes.

It’s a contact sport so accidental tripping of an opponent is going to happen and should be penalised (it doesn’t happen often though)

The ball flicking off your pinky finger as it gets slammed at you from 2 yards is not the same. 

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5 minutes ago, Ossydave said:

It's not even up for debate, yes of course it should.

Sad to see players who have resorted to putting their hands behind their back every time the ball is in the box, it shouldn't have to be like that.

Most players will try to take any interpritation to the limit, this puts the refs on the spot (no pun intended). I have never known a player with the ball thinking, I know I'll hit the other player on the arm with the ball, and get a free kick. So no, I think any contact ball to arm should be penalised.

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30 minutes ago, Ossydave said:

It's not even up for debate, yes of course it should.

Sad to see players who have resorted to putting their hands behind their back every time the ball is in the box, it shouldn't have to be like that.

Shall I close the thread then? 😁

 

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27 minutes ago, Forever Blue said:

Yes.

It’s a contact sport so accidental tripping of an opponent is going to happen and should be penalised (it doesn’t happen often though)

The ball flicking off your pinky finger as it gets slammed at you from 2 yards is not the same. 

But why should it be penalised if it was accidental?

I do see the argument for why handball should have to be deliberate but I’m just unclear as to why this doesn’t extend to other ‘foul play’

I’m sure I’m in the minority here and am just trying to understand the difference.

 

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21 minutes ago, rigger said:

Most players will try to take any interpritation to the limit, this puts the refs on the spot (no pun intended). I have never known a player with the ball thinking, I know I'll hit the other player on the arm with the ball, and get a free kick. So no, I think any contact ball to arm should be penalised.

I don’t see how this is any different to a player leaving his leg out to ‘invite’ a foul.

Either both are legitimate tactics or neither are.

That’s where my confusion with what most people think lies.

I’m pretty confident I’ll be proved to be wrong but I would like to understand why 😀

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  • Backroom

You have to make some allowance for it being accidental, but I don't think it's as simple as saying "don't penalise any accidental handballs". If you've got some clumsy oaf jumping and running around with their arms swinging everywhere, then that obviously needs to be addressed if said clumsiness affects the natural flight of the ball, whether they intended to handball or not. 

What I found strange was the suggestion that proximity from ball-to-hand has now been removed from the interpretations of the rule. Can't see any logic behind that decision. That's where they've gone wrong imo. You have to take that into account alongside what would be considered a 'natural' body position to make a fair call. At the moment you've got half the defenders running around with their arms crossed behind their backs, which is ridiculous and clearly gives the attacker an advantage as running around with your arms behind your back is going to limit your maneuverability. 

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18 minutes ago, wilsdenrover said:

I don’t see how this is any different to a player leaving his leg out to ‘invite’ a foul.

Either both are legitimate tactics or neither are.

That’s where my confusion with what most people think lies.

I’m pretty confident I’ll be proved to be wrong but I would like to understand why 😀

Until players stop trying to bend the rules (cheating), decissions will be subjective. Some people will agree with them, others won't.

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1 minute ago, rigger said:

Until players stop trying to bend the rules (cheating), decissions will be subjective. Some people will agree with them, others won't.

If the rule was ‘the ball hits your hand it’s handball’ - where’s the subjectivity in that?

Clearly that would still be open to abuse (players aiming the ball at opponents hands) but is that not a different argument?

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10 minutes ago, wilsdenrover said:

If the rule was ‘the ball hits your hand it’s handball’ - where’s the subjectivity in that?

Clearly that would still be open to abuse (players aiming the ball at opponents hands) but is that not a different argument?

I am glad you agree.

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42 minutes ago, wilsdenrover said:

But why should it be penalised if it was accidental?

I do see the argument for why handball should have to be deliberate but I’m just unclear as to why this doesn’t extend to other ‘foul play’

I’m sure I’m in the minority here and am just trying to understand the difference.

 

I suppose it comes down to interpretation, like deliberate handball would. The German penalty was clearly not deliberate handball, others may be less obvious. 
 

Likewise, a player purposefully slowing down or leaving a leg out so he is collided with in the box would be down to interpretation. 
 

I think a good ref who was allowed to use common sense (and with the help of video replays) would make the right decision most of the time. 
 

I doubt a good ref who was allowed to use common sense would have given that German pen. 

Edited by Forever Blue
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Posted (edited)
4 minutes ago, rigger said:

I am glad you agree.

I’ve agreed players will still try to bend the rule, I don’t agree you can’t remove subjectivity from the rule.

Whether that’s a good or bad thing is, of course, subjective…

Edited by wilsdenrover
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39 minutes ago, wilsdenrover said:

I’ve agreed players will still try to bend the rule, I don’t agree you can’t remove subjectivity from the rule.

Whether that’s a good or bad thing is, of course, subjective…

So you do agree, you can remove subjectivity. All we need to agree about now is, should subjectivity be removed 

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3 minutes ago, rigger said:

So you do agree, you can remove subjectivity. All we need to agree about now is, should subjectivity be removed 

I’ve obviously got confused somewhere along the way 😄

But yes, what you’ve put there does seem a good summary 👍

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Make handball an in-direct free kick (unless it's obvious they've deliberately handled the ball). 

Removes the biggest problem - basically free goals for a player getting hit on the hand from 2 yards away. 

Edited by Exiled_Rover
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4 hours ago, wilsdenrover said:

But why should it be penalised if it was accidental?

I do see the argument for why handball should have to be deliberate but I’m just unclear as to why this doesn’t extend to other ‘foul play’

I’m sure I’m in the minority here and am just trying to understand the difference.

 

Intent does come into play with fouls on the pitch. Consider a winger who runs with the ball straight into the defender, who didn't try to block him but couldn't get out of the way. I'm not a ref, and feel free to correct me if anyone knows better, but I don't think that is technically a foul (though, they're given).

I think the unintentional handball exception is/was in the same spirit of recognition of our physical limitations and sense of fairness. And, I think,  it worked on the basis that it was possible to make the call with reasonable confidence.

Misplaced but well-intentioned tackles became fouls when the rules were drawn up, most probably because there was a desire to make the game safer and a test of speed and agility, as much as strength - and, it'd be impossible for a referee to be adjudicating intent on the constant tackling going on in a match. In a sense, I guess, you're right, misplaced tackling is/was treated more severely in the rulebook, than certain other types of fouls for these reasons.

Edit: Generally speaking, I believe VAR opens a Pandora's box of Big Tech, whose financial interest is to expand technology's role in the game and become a massive lobby in the industry.

 

Edited by riverholmes
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22 minutes ago, riverholmes said:

Intent does come into play with fouls on the pitch. Consider a winger who runs with the ball straight into the defender, who didn't try to block him but couldn't get out of the way. I'm not a ref, and feel free to correct me if anyone knows better, but I don't think that is technically a foul (though, they're given).

I think the unintentional handball exception is/was in the same spirit of recognition of our physical limitations and sense of fairness. And, I think,  it worked on the basis that it was possible to make the call with reasonable confidence.

Misplaced but well-intentioned tackles became fouls when the rules were drawn up, most probably because there was a desire to make the game safer and a test of speed and agility, as much as strength - and, it'd be impossible for a referee to be adjudicating intent on the constant tackling going on in a match. In a sense, I guess, you're right, misplaced tackling is/was treated more severely in the rulebook, than certain other types of fouls for these reasons.

Edit: Generally speaking, I believe VAR opens a Pandora's box of Big Tech, whose financial interest is to expand technology's role in the game and become a massive lobby in the industry.

 

I hadn’t considered that but you’re right, some other foul play does take intent into account.

Regarding your last paragraph, at least we know the ‘powers that be’ will only make changes which benefit the sport and not themselves  🙄

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5 hours ago, wilsdenrover said:

I hadn’t considered that but you’re right, some other foul play does take intent into account.

Regarding your last paragraph, at least we know the ‘powers that be’ will only make changes which benefit the sport and not themselves  🙄

IFAB Laws of the Game 2024/25 - Rule 5.2: 

"Decisions will be made to the best of the referee's ability according to the Laws of the Game and the 'spirit of the game' and will be based on the opinion of the referee who has the discretion to take appropriate action within the framework of the Laws of the Game."

I believe the way rules are being amended and technology is being used, in some cases, is failing to uphold the "fairness" inherent to the spirit of the game. If technology doesn't support achieving fairness, then it shouldn't be used.

Edited by riverholmes
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8 hours ago, Exiled_Rover said:

Make handball an in-direct free kick (unless it's obvious they've deliberately handled the ball). 

Removes the biggest problem - basically free goals for a player getting hit on the hand from 2 yards away. 

Same, a penalty is fine for deliberate handball or clear denial of a goal, but indirect free kick is enough for anything else.

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How many times does someone deliberately think ‘I’m gonna handle the ball here?’ If it’s only ever deliberate then it wouldn’t be a rule at all.

Let’s see what the general consensus is if a Burnley player accidentally stopped it going in with his hand in the last minute. I don’t think the current rule is too far off being the right one, it’s the way the English refs (as seen in the euros) are implementing it that stinks.

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I'm torn because there's a part of me that thinks if the hand deflects the ball significantly and takes it away from an incoming attacker then surely that should be punished? Intent or not, the ball has struck a part of the body you can't play the ball with and negatively affected the outcome for the opponent. 

How many players go into a tackle intending to put studs on the other players ankle? Some maybe but not all yet it all gets punished the same. 

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Indirect free kicks are given for a back pass which is arguably a more ‘serious’ handball so there would be logic in applying an indirect free kick to an accidental handball. The only issue being that ‘accidental’ would become so subjective to the point it would tumble on for weeks on SSN and Talkshite

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16 hours ago, MB Rover said:

How many times does someone deliberately think ‘I’m gonna handle the ball here?’ If it’s only ever deliberate then it wouldn’t be a rule at all.

Let’s see what the general consensus is if a Burnley player accidentally stopped it going in with his hand in the last minute. I don’t think the current rule is too far off being the right one, it’s the way the English refs (as seen in the euros) are implementing it that stinks.

Just simply wearing a Burnley shirt should be a bookable office at minimum.

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