In U13 high level tournament last weekend a midfielder was running at a moderate pace and the ball crossed in front of her at waist height.
She seemed to reflexively slap it down, and then she stopped running as she knew she would get called for handling. She actually turned around and started walking backwards, anticipating the free kick from the opponent at the spot of her infraction.
The center ref had whistled the call, and then showed her a yellow card. She showed no disention, did not kick the ball again when it was on the ground, and did not complain.
Was a yellow called for? I don’t think I have ever seen it called like that, and the Laws don’t seem to indicate it was appropriate.
When questioned at half, the Ref confirmed he gave her the yellow for her “deliberate” attempt to handle.
What do you think?
USSF answer (June 25, 2009):
If the referee believed the act of deliberate handling to have been a tactical foul, then the caution for unsporting behavior was deserved.,