A development to soccer

The offsides penalty should be modified or removed from soccer



Soccer would be a new experience for both the players and the fans without the offsides offense. It would force a quicker paced game and create more opportunities for each side to score.

Garrett Wilcoxen, Staff Reporter

As of right now, the offside offense takes place in all aspects of soccer and is used in high school, college and major league soccer. It occurs when an opponent is on the other half of the pitch, the field of gameplay, and closer to the opponents goal line than both the ball and the second to last opponent.

Being in an offside position is not an offense in itself, but a player positioned when the ball is played by a teammate, can be called guilty of an offside offense if they become involved in active play. This means a player gets called offsides if they are in front of the ball and two defenders aren’t in front of them. An offsides offense would also occur if that person interferes with an opponent or gains an advantage by being in that position. According to ESPN, a player is offside, or they are not. It’s a factual position based on the players and the ball, relative to the pitch. Although the offense is useful in some situations, high school, college and major league soccer should have the offense removed or modified.

The offense is generally used to prevent long punts towards one goal with crowds of people trying to score. There are many reasons the offense is generally questioned for change, but one stands out from the rest. The rule states that the ball can’t be touched by a player, if they are closer to the opponents goal line, than both the ball and the second to last opponent. The second to last opponent is almost always the goalie but doesn’t have to be. This means that if the goalie isn’t back, and a player gets passed the ball contested by one defender, the play is counted offside. This is unfair to the offensive team and should be removed from the penalty guidelines.

According to Soccer STL, since 2013 there have been several modifications to the offsides rule with simple to no explanations over them. Each change has been made to reduce the advantage the defense had and constantly impedes the game’s development and growth. Continuously changing this offense is confusing to many people, and it should be made clearer what situations it can occur in, or the offense should be abolished.

Abolishing the offside offense would also make a more entertaining game for the fans. There would be more goals scored and it would force players to play a more spaced out game. This would also extract any confusion about the rule from players and fans and wouldn’t put blame on the refs for poor calls. Soccer STL says fans will benefit without the unnecessary interruptions and conflict that come from a rule even the referees will tell you is difficult and flawed.

Overall, soccer needs to severely modify the offsides offense or abolish it. This change would benefit the players and the fans by creating a faster paced game, along with decreasing the constant stops of gameplay and poor calls by the refs. It also would force players to play a greater spaced out game, and would strengthen the game in all aspects.