KICKS FROM THE PENALTY MARK

Question:
Can you please clarify in Advice to Referees latest edition section 3.12 it advises: Under no circumstances team requires to equate in case it’s player is injured or ejected due to misconduct.

What need clarification is that it is only after the kicks from penalty mark started. In addition it says that even if there is one player only left, kicks continue while it should probably says two due to Goal Keeper. This came in a latest state written test

I have another question in regards to the taking of kicks from the penalty mark to decide a match. What is the rule if a player is ejected (or injured) when game ended but prior to first player taking the kick? thanks

USSF answer (May 14, 2008):
For everyone’s benefit, here is what Advice 3.12 says:

3.12 NUMBER OF PLAYERS DURING KICKS FROM THE PENALTY MARK
Only the players who were on the field at the end of the game (or temporarily off the field for treatment of injury or repair of equipment) may participate in kicks from the penalty mark. The kicks from the mark phase of the match begins at the moment regulation play ends (including any overtime periods of play.) All players who are not injured must take a kick before anyone on the same team takes a second kick. Only the goalkeeper may be substituted in the case of injury during the kicks phase and only if the team has a substitution remaining from its permitted maximum. If a player is removed from the field for misconduct or is unable to participate in the taking of kicks due to an injury, the contest continues without him or her. ¬†Under no circumstances will a team be required to “reduce to equate” if the opposing team loses one or more players due to misconduct or injury. Although Law 3 requires that a match may not be started with fewer than seven players on each side, this does not apply to the taking of kicks from the penalty mark. If one of the teams is able to field only five or six players for the kicks, the taking of kicks may begin, and it may continue as long as there is one player left. Until a result is produced, both teams must continue to use their eligible players without duplication until all (including the goalkeeper) have kicked, at which time players who have already kicked may kick again. If one team has fewer players than the other, it will need to begin using again its players who have already kicked sooner than will the opposing team.
Note: It is not necessary for players to kick in the same order if a second round of kicks is required. (See also Advice 19.1 and 19.2.)

The process of kicks from the penalty mark (KFTPM) begins as soon as the referee has ended the final period of play. That is the only time that the reduce to equate principle comes into play: If one team has more eligible players at that moment, it must reduce its number of eligible players to match that of the other team. Once the beginning number of players/kickers for the kicks If a team loses a player through injury (other than the goalkeeper, see 3.12) or dismissal during the KFTPM, the opposing team does not have to reduce its numbers.

The reason that the number of players can drop to only one, if that becomes necessary through injury or dismissal, is that the normal minimum number of players does not apply during the KFTPM. Although it may seem strange, if there is only one player remaining, he or she can kick and then act as goalkeeper when the other team kicks. The player would not be performing both tasks at the same time. (And this is almost surely simply a theoretical thing, as no players would want their team down to only one player in this crucial situation.) The only difference in the KFTPM process would be that, while kicking, the kicker could not stand in the usual place for the goalkeeper during the KFTPM by other members of his/her team.

If a player is dismissed after the end of the game, but before the kicks actually begin, that player’s team will have one less player during the KFTPM. The other team does not have to reduce its numbers.

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