In a recent tournament as veteran referees were exchanging war stories, we came across a divided decision on a scenario that was encountered at a recent tournament. Please give us your verdict.Attacker takes a shot from the top of the 18. A defender ( we are not sure if it was the goalie or one of the defenders ) realizing that the ball is about to enter the goal, jumps up and grabs the top of the goal cross and brings it down. They were using one of those cheap goals. Ball obviously did not enter the goal and whistle was blown after the ball crossed the goal line.
I think we all agreed that the correct re-start would be a goal kick ( we may be wrong on that? ). The argument is over a caution vs. red card. Some referee argue that it was a USB and it should only be a caution. The others obviously argue that it was a deny of goal scoring opportunity. The administrators at that tournament elected to red card the player after the game.
So give us your opinion, please.
USSF answer (March 14, 2007):
The original offense is unsporting behavior, for which the player must be cautioned. The player’s misconduct is punished by an indirect free kick. Because the misconduct, punishable by an indirect free kick, denied the opponent a goal or an obvious goalscoring opportunity, the player must also be sent off for that reason. This holds true for most scenarios.
However, there is at least one possible scenario in which it would make a difference if it was a field player or the goalkeeper: That would involve the ball contacting the crossbar instead of sailing into the goal (i. e., the crossbar was pulled down just enough to cause the ball to hit it, as opposed to being pulled down enough to cause the ball to sail over it). If the ball made contact with the crossbar AND the offending player was NOT the goalkeeper, then the crossbar became an extension of the player’s hand (just as would be the case if the player threw an object at and struck the ball), so the restart would be a penalty kick in addition to the send-off for S4. If it was the goalkeeper or if the pull on the crossbar allowed the ball to sail totally over it, then IFK for the misconduct in addition to the red card (but this time it would be S5).