An Indirect Free Kick is awarded to the opposing team if a goalkeeper,
inside his own penalty area, commits any of the following four offences:
- Controls the ball with his hands for more than six seconds before releasing it from
- Touches the ball again with his hands after he has released it from his possession
and before it has touched another player
- Touches the ball with his hands after it has been deliberately kicked to him by
- Touches the ball with his hands after he has received it directly from a throw-in
taken by a team-mate
The referee will blow the whistle to signal that an infraction has occured. He will
then raise his hand into the air to signal an Indirect Free Kick. This means that
the ball must touched by two players before it enters the goal to count. Usually
this means an opponent will touch or pass it to a teammate who then will shoot it.
The first thing the goalkeeper needs to do in this sitiation is to get the play
stopped and ensure that his team-mates have enough time to set up adequately to
defend the situation. The goalkeeper must make it so that the opponents have to
wait for the referee to blow the whistle before continuing play. The only guaranteed
way to do this is for the goalkeeper to kick the ball out of bounds far enough that
the referee has to book him with a yellow card for time wasting. Once the referee
decides to book the goalkeeper, the opposition must then wait for the referee to
blow the whistle to restart play. Obviously this is only something the goalkeeper
would do if he hasn't been yellow carded already in the game. If the goalkeeper
cannot draw a yellow card to stop play, a team-mate must do so instead!
Don't want to take a yellow card?
See the video below for an example of what could happen if you don't!
While the referee is in the process of booking the goalkeeper, his team-mates should
be in the process of setting up to defend the Indirect Free Kick. The Laws of the
Game state that all opponents must be 10 yards away from the ball if possible. It
will not be possible to stand 10 yards away if the ball is located 8 yards from
the goal line! In that case the opponents would only have to stand 8 yards away
from the ball.
For Indirect Free Kicks inside the Eighteen Yard Box, the goalkeeper
should have all of his teammates (10 outfield players!) set up in a defensive wall
at the required distance from the ball. The goalkeeper should then take up a position
directly in FRONT of the wall.
The goalkeepers job is to pressure the ball immediately after it is touched or passed
(This is often referred to as 'The Bullet Man'). He should sprint out of the wall
to try and smother or block any immediate shots. His teammates remain behind to
try and cover as much of the goal as possible in case it gets past the goalkeeper.