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What's new for 2022/23: Offsides

2 Aug 2022
PL assistant referee raises offside flag

IFAB has clarified what constitutes defenders "deliberately playing" the ball for offsides

Ahead of the 2022/23 Premier League season, here are some features you will see for the first time.

Change in offside 

IFAB, football's law-making body, has clarified the offside rule, explaining what constitutes defending players "deliberately playing" the ball.

Though Law 11 (offside) has not explicitly changed, the new guidelines make clear that an attacking player who is offside will not automatically become onside upon a defender touching the ball, unless it was a save.

Though Law 11 has not explicitly changed, the new guidelines make clear an offside player will not automatically become onside upon a defender touching the ball.

"'Deliberate play' is when a player has control of the ball with the possibility of passing the ball to a team-mate, gaining possession of the ball, or clearing the ball," IFAB's clarified guidelines state.

"If the pass, attempt to gain possession or clearance by the player in control of the ball is inaccurate or unsuccessful, this does not negate the fact that the player 'deliberately played' the ball."

In addition, IFAB provides these indicators as to when a player "deliberately played" the ball:

- The ball had travelled from distance and the players had a clear view of it
- The ball was not moving quickly
- The direction of the ball was not unexpected
- The player had time to coordinate their body movement
- A ball moving on the ground is easier to play than a ball in the air

Also in this series

Part 1: Five substitutes
Part 2: Nike Flight ball
Part 3: New match officials
Part 4: Premier League 2 changes age limit
Part 5: Law change for penalties
Part 6: New match postponement guidance
Part 8: Multiball system

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