At about 30 yds, fron t of the goal, defender made a foul which requires a caution (no discussion about it). The referee wants to issue a caution but the attacking team plays the DFK immediately in order to gain an advantage. The referee let play. Now on the top of this, the defender who made the foul already had a caution and therefore should have been send off but is not. Could the referee issue the caution at the next stoppage or is the opportuinity gone as the team played the DFK rapidly? I am aware of the USSF memo about stopping the play to issue a caution.
I remember seeing a game in which the referee had the caution in his hand but the team played fast and I beleive the referee gave the caution afterwards.
USSF answer (May 6, 2008):
It is not simply USSF who says that the disciplinary action must be taken before the restart: It is implicit in the Laws, which state it quite clearly. The referee may not delay the caution (or further punishment) until after a subsequent stoppage; it must be done at this stoppage or not at all.
If the team against whom the offense was committed takes the free kick quickly, but the referee KNOWS that this would not be fair to all participants within the Spirit of the Game, then the referee has two ways of dealing with the matter. The first would be to stop play immediately, noting that the restart was taken “incorrectly” and thus making it null and void. He or she may then issue the caution (or greater punishment) and then allow the restart to be retaken “correctly.” The second option depends on the judgment of the referee: If this particular restart is, in the opinion of the referee, an excellent opportunity for the team with the ball, then the incident may be set aside for the moment and later recorded in the match report with full details. This will allow the competition authority to make up its own mind on the matter.