I was involved in an interesting conversation last weekend at a youth tournament.

Here is the scenario:

The ball is passed/shot towards the goal. The ball appears to be going over the cross bar. The goal is a not of the strong variety. As the ball is approaching, the goalkeeper jumps and grabs the crossbar (causing the bar to dip) as the ball goes into touch. If the goalkeeper had not held onto the crossbar the ball would have made contact and might have stayed in play.

There are now two questions:

#1 Should the goalkeeper be given a yellow card for Unsporting Behavior for bringing the game in disrepute for hanging on the crossbar?

#2 What should the restart be?

*goal kick since the attacking team played the ball out of bounds
*drop ball because of the goalkeepers action for hanging on the crossbar

Thank you for taking the time to read my question.

Why has the “ask the referee” link been removed from the website? It was my favorite thing to read.

USSF answer (September 14, 2009):
1. Caution to the goalkeeper for unsporting behavior.
2. Restart with an indirect free kick for the opposing team on the goal area line at the point nearest to where the goalkeeper committed the unsporting behavior.

If the referee needs to do more to promote his/her control of the game, the goalkeeper could also be dismissed for denying an obvious goal-scoring opportunity to an opponent moving towards the player’s goal by an offense punishable by a free kick or a penalty kick — in this case the indirect free kick for the misconduct.

The U. S. Soccer Federation’s website is being rebuilt. Ask A Referee will return in the fullness of time. Meanwhile you can find all the current and past questions and answers at http://www.askasoccerreferee.com .

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