Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Premiership makes room

The English FA has added and taken away some rules for the Premiership season beginning next week.

One new rule being introduced states that players will have to stay a minimum of 2 meters from the thrower.

This change will enable longer throw-ins, keeps the game flowing and, in a subtle way, gives a nudge to teams which keep possession. All positives for the Premiership.

I found the practice of getting right up to the line to distract the thrower a bit too aggressive. It’s a potential confrontation, but good, it’s been solved.

I’m assuming intent plays into it. What happens now when a player chooses a quick throw before the defender can get out of the way? The referee can’t whistle that.

In addition the rule for moving free kicks up ten yards has been scrapped, another good change. The rule was intended to punish dissent and wall-creep but stunk from day one.

At times, after the 10 yards were awarded, it looked like a scrum in front of goal with everyone pushing each other around. Indeed, it doesn’t make sense to deal with dissent by creating chaos. What might have been a better rule would be to order 2 defenders out of the box: a solution which would saction the dissent plus open up space.
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