My last article has brought up an interesting debate on the offside laws.

By my interpretation, Becchio’s goal was correctly allowed last night – whether or not you agree with the laws or not is another matter.

First phase:

Brondby hooks a ball over to Beckford, who is level, and therefore onside. Becchio at this point, is in an offside position, but isn’t interfering with play.

Beckford has a shot – Becchio is now behind Beckford and is therefore back onside.

Second phase:

Gomes saves the ball, and it comes out to Becchio. Because he had got himself back onside in the first phase, he is not flagged offside when he finishes.


I think people are getting confused about when Becchio was offside – if he had been ahead of Beckford and still in an offside position when Beckford had the shot, then absolutely, the flag should have gone up.

This is just my interpretation of the current laws – please correct me if I’m wrong!

And by the way, yes, Defoe’s goal at Anfield was clearly onside, and a poor decision. But no, two wrongs don’t make a right!

Join the conversation

  1. The current offside law is a shambing nonsense. As Clough used to say, "If you're not interfering with play, what are you doing on the pitch?".
  2. Becchio was offside when the ball was played in and remained behind the last defender when he put the ball in the net. Interference in play extends to intent to interfere (which is incidentally the reason behind why Defoe's goal was ruled out at Anfield) Same 'phase of play', should have been ruled out. One pass does not equal a phase of play i.e. The initial ball and Beckfords shot were the same phase. The phase began when Bromby hooked the ball in and ended when the ball was in the net.
  3. Everyone is really confused. But from what I gather, the 'phase of play' rules were brought in to keep the game flowing. Before that people were getting offside for frivolous reasons - i.e. the player offside is not anywhere near the ball and not part of attack. HOWEVER, in this case the player is in the six yard box. Therefore he is part of the attack - and offside. As far as I know (I haven't read the rule book), you are in an offside position when the ball is played forward. People are thinking that it is only offside if it is played to you. But what if the pass WAS intended for Becchio? I.e mis-hit? Then that is an offside pass. In short - the players are all in the box and too close together for this 'phase of play' stuff. In this case, one player offside = all players offside.
  4. "As Clough used to say, "If you're not interfering with play, what are you doing on the pitch?"."


    That should be attributed to the great Danny Blanchflower, Clough may have said it later, but the quote is Danny's.
  5. Interesting comments, thanks for those.

    2nd commenter - the laws say that a player is only interfering if he's playing the ball or gaining an advantage. When Brondby makes his pass, Becchio is actually running towards the edge of the box, and so isn't IMO.

    3rd commenter - so if Beckford had banged his chance into the top corner, you'd have still ruled it out for offside?

    4th commenter - in some ways, it would be easier to just go back to the "old laws".
  6. 3rd Commenter to Windy.
    Yes I believe it should be. He is literally 4 yards away from someone who was offside. (With a rule change) The flag should go up straight away when the ball is played forward into the box, and there is a player in the box offide. He wouldn't have a chance to shoot. Why? Because defenders have to mark that offside player. By marking him, they are not marking Beckford - so he is interfering. By the way, I am not a biased Spurs fan - I believe that that Defoe 'goal' at Anfield was offside too.
  7. 2nd commenter here. The rules, for such an important facet fo the game, are ridiculously vague and makes refereeing such calls a living hell. We already have about 4 different interpretations here and all of them are valid. This is the problem, not whether or not the goal stood.
  8. the difference being that the defoe one at liverpool was a different phase of play, and the leeds one wasnt!
  9. The reality is this:
    It doesn't matter if anyone is offside or not, all that matters is if the lino thinks he's offside and puts the flag up. Lottery.
  10. Clearly the whole action was one phase of play and the goal should have been ruled out.

    As pointed out above, by running between the 6 yard box and 18 yard box during an attack, you are bound to effect the actions of the defenders (either as they wark you, at the expense of marking others, or they push out to catch you offside, thereby leaving space for other attackers to run into).

    The fact is that Becchio clearly gains an advantage by starting 2 yards closer to the goal than any defender. To say that once Beckford shoots and it is saved he becomes onside again is unfair as how are the defenders that were correctly pushing out to catch him offside supposed to regain those 2 yards? Hence he has gained a clear advantage.
  11. 12:43 Was SPOT ON. It is down to interpretation, and the lino and ref can have a different opinion and put his flag up. Now I am not sure about the rules, but can the ref ignore this offside flag? What if the defenders see the flag and stop playing? Shambles. Perhaps a compromise is that the 'offside' player should have got to get behind the ball again before he can become active.
  12. 12:43 Was SPOT ON.
    13:09 EVEN MORE SO, SPOT ON!
  13. Go back to basics. If any opposing player, interfering, daydreaming, loitering or otherwise, in whatever phase of play, is caught the wrong side of the last defender when the ball is played through, the lino must raise a flag. Seems strangely simple to me. No grey areas there.
  14. To 15:11 - There will always be a grey area. It cannot be avoided. In your scenario - if someone took a shot whilst someone else is 'offside' do we raise a flag? If no because it was a shot and not a passed, what if it is a mis-hit shot that resembles a pass? What if someone got injured and is lying on the floor - in an offside position when ball is played forward? We need each controversial case to be openly discussed by the authorities on which ones were right and wrong - and why.
  15. Laws are OK and should be applied individually to each case based on the circumstances. Liverpool was not offside, as Reina had a clear opportunity to clear the ball, decided to mess about with it and was dispossed. Defoe did not gain an advantage from being in an advanced position, it was simply Reina's stupidity which gave Defoe time to catch him out, etc. Defoe's intelligence and work rate should not have been punised for Reina's cocky foolishness in not getting rid off the ball. As for last night, clearly offside. The ball was hooked in, Beckford with a nice shot and Gomes lovely save. Problem is Gomes' save is instinctive and thus forced to push it into Becchio's path in the process of keeping it out, thus all in the same passage of play and hence Becchio in being a yard in front of the defenders has gained an unfair advantage thus off-side. Simply because he is off-side though, does not mean that if Beckford had scored the goal should be ruled out. Definetly not, should have stood if Beckford had got it in but as he did not and Gomes pushed it out to Becchio - that makes it off-side plain and simple. The rules are actually excellent for this type of situation and real progress, problem is the idiots who fail to interpret them properly and thus cost team's un-necessarily and we are usually on the receiving end which is starting to stink a bit really. If it were Arse or Utd you can bet their bosses would have kicked up an almight fuss already at the crap we have been enduring this season, especially lately. About time the ref's started giving us some decision's aswell as the benefit of the doubt!!!!!!
  16. Yet another reason to have instant replay for anything in the game resulting in a questionable goal or a penalty kick. It's not rocket science, it's not even American football with its endlessly complex rules. Very simply, an official up in a box somewhere needs to have a screen in front of him/her to take a second to look at what happened and "phone" it down to the ref saying yes you got it right, or no you moron you messed it up. Not really that hard, wouldn't interrupt the flow of the game, and the fans and players would appreciate it.
  17. This article was recommended by JimmyG2, and I'm glad he did!!
  18. Whole thing is mental. If someone standing front of the goal is not interfering with play or in the vision of the goalkeeper then whats the point. Whole world has gone mad, FIFA are almost as bonkers as CAF. God knows how the referees can cope with they were making enough balls up without these silly rules. I am almost wanting to see Donkey Adams with arm up in the air or people passing back to their keeping from 50 yards and him picking it up, the world was once simpler.
  19. looking forward to the next loan watch mate ;-)
  20. I can only echo the sentiments of Anonymous above- I'm looking forward to the next loan watch! Quite interested to find out how Giovani is going to get on in Turkey...

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