Global Football Odds & Ends

rguilmar

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Jul 16, 2005
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Baseless prediction - Mourinho.
Totally baseless prediction- Allegri. It won’t happen but I guarantee someone in the Italian press at some point will claim it’s a done deal.

With the two biggest Italian jobs likely vacant, the Italian press is going to have an awesome time with the rumors and headlines.
 

Dummy Hoy

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On a more somber note (but sticking to Italy), today is the 34th anniversary of the Heysel Disaster. On that day 39 Juventus fans went to a football match and didn't come home. One of the great tragedies of world football, and one that is too often forgotten.

 

Kliq

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Ronaldo's hat trick leads Portugal past Switzerland and into the Nation's League final; his last goal being the best of the bunch:

 

coremiller

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Ronaldo finished that as smoothly as he pays off women who accuse him of sexual assault to stay quiet.
 

PedroSpecialK

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I think she's filing in federal court from what I'd last read.

If CR7 actually said this as is claimed by Der Spiegel I don't see how it can be considered anything else...

I fucked her from the side. She made herself available. She was lying on her side, in bed, and I entered her from behind. It was rough. We didn't change position. 5/7 minutes. She said that she didn't want to, but she made herself available. The whole time it was rough, I turned her onto her side, and it was fast. Maybe she got some bruises when I grabbed her. (...) She didn't want to 'give it to me,' instead she jerked me off. I don't know any more exactly what she said when she was jerking me off. But she kept saying no. 'Don't do it' -- 'I'm not like the others.' I apologized afterwards.
 

Kliq

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Good game in the other semi-final; Rashford converted a penalty in the first half to put England up 1-0, but de Light answered for Netherlands in the 73' to tie it. On top of that, a Lingard goal was just overturned by VAR that would have likely been the winner for England.
 

Kliq

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In just a classic England move; Jon Stones has an inexplicable give away in extra time, leading to a break away for the Netherlands, but Pickford makes an amazing save, only to have Kyle Walker put it into the back of the net on an errant clearance.
 

Kliq

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Lol, Barkley, I bet @OilCanShotTupac liked that one.

Netherlands have been the better side for the entire game; England really didn't start the A squad here and was clearly hampered by important players having played in that CL final, but this looked like the England of old and not the spunky team that made the WC semi-finals.
 

PedroSpecialK

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Even bigger yikes from Stones to Barkley to... Depay there. Sets up Promes for the 3-1.

Walker's giveaway to Depay to spring Wijnaldum set up the situation deep in England's half to begin with
 

Kliq

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Lol, Sterling looked like a cornerback trying to lay-out Gronk on that collision with VVD.
 

Zososoxfan

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In just a classic England move; Jon Stones has an inexplicable give away in extra time, leading to a break away for the Netherlands, but Pickford makes an amazing save, only to have Kyle Walker put it into the back of the net on an errant clearance.
England really is the gift that keeps on giving. It doesn't hurt that I ball with a bunch of Brits and they absolutely-ironically yelled 'It's coming home!' repeatedly throughout last summer's WC.
 

Kliq

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England really is the gift that keeps on giving. It doesn't hurt that I ball with a bunch of Brits and they absolutely-ironically yelled 'It's coming home!' repeatedly throughout last summer's WC.
Yeah well I'm sure they note there is no shortage of failures on your end either.
 

InstaFace

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Isn't Zoso spanish or portuguese or something? Either way he's got something on both the Brits and us.
 

InstaFace

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Sports-Reference has come out with a footie site: FBref.com

Still loading data - they don't have international results, don't have coaches, etc. But it's clearly a project they're working on.
 

SoxFanInCali

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California. Duh.
Rafa Benitez has signed a deal to be the new manager of Dalian Yifang in the Chinese Super League.
 
Last edited:

Cellar-Door

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Rafa gonna go the Pellegrini route, a year or 2 in China for huge money, then slide back in with a desperate club willing to give you a lot of control.
 

OilCanShotTupac

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Frank Lampard, with one season of experience, is the new Chelsea manager.


Does the transfer ban mean the Pulisic might get meaningful minutes for this club?
The Hazard-sized hole means that Pusilic will get minutes, yes.

Lampard has to know that this is a poisoned chalice, right? This is the worst possible time to be coming in due to the ban, but expectations are going to be high still, especially for the prodigal son. I think he's taking this job 2-3 years too early.
 

Dummy Hoy

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The Hazard-sized hole means that Pusilic will get minutes, yes.

Lampard has to know that this is a poisoned chalice, right? This is the worst possible time to be coming in due to the ban, but expectations are going to be high still, especially for the prodigal son. I think he's taking this job 2-3 years too early.
I think it’s possibly the best time, although I can see both sides of the argument. This might be the one time Chelsea has to demonstrate patience with a manager, given the transfer ban, loss of Hazard, introduction of new and/or young players. Especially given that it’s Lamps, maybe the most popular player in club history.

That said, I think it’s ridiculous. He’s got one year of management, in which he was good not great, and he’s stepping into his peak achievement job? Crazy. I appreciate his confidence, but you’re right, there no reason for him to not go back to Derby, get a few years of experience, and take the job in 2-3 (or 5) years. It’s Chelsea- they’re not finding their Ferguson this summer.
 

Titans Bastard

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Kliq

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I remember in the old MVP Baseball games, Barry Bonds was never in the games because of how his contract was negotiated. His likeness was transferred onto a random white guy named Jon Dowd.
 

Zososoxfan

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There's been some (official?) changes to the laws of the game. It's a bit hard to get exact details on this, but the 3 major changes I see are:

1. The handball rule and explanation has been tweaked. I can't find official wording, but I'll summarize what I read below.

2. Offensive players are not allowed to be within 1 meter of (i.e. interfere with) a defensive wall on FKs including 3 or more players. This is a good change.

3. Keepers must only keep one foot on the line on PKs. This is a good change.

Other changes include dropped balls. Dropped ball restarts seem like they're gone as currently constructed. The ball will still be dropped, but only to one team with a ~5 yard radius given. Not sure about this. Also, subbed off players will go to the nearest sideline instead of midfield by the benches. Saving time, so good IMO.

As for handballs, the changes can be summarized as follows. First and much to my OCD delight, handball has replaced handling as the key term in the definition. For these rules, they are intended to be read and understood sequentially.

  • Deliberate handballs are still infractions.
  • Accidental handballs will still be called if: 1) the handball goes off an attacking player and results in a goal; 2) the handball goes off an attacking player and that player retains possession; and 3) if the ball goes off a players arm/hand which has made their body unnaturally bigger.
    • Unnaturally bigger means hand/arm above the shoulder.
  • A ball that incidentally hits a defender's arm/hand after coming off his/her head will not be a handball regardless of positioning (i.e. above the shoulder). That is a natural position for balance.
  • The following will NOT USUALLY be handballs:
    • The ball touches a player's hand/arm following the path from their own or another player's head/foot/body
    • the ball touches a player's hand/arm which is close to their body and does not make their body unnaturally bigger
    • if a player is falling and the ball touches a player's hand/arm which is between the body and the ground (i.e. for support and not to make the body bigger)
    • the caveat is that the result cannot be an unfair advantage
Overall, these seem like good changes attempting to fix the biggest problem in the game. They will likely require tweaks over time, but the shoulder height standard is a good starting point and the carveout for going to ground is helpful. In addition, the clarification about the ball going off someone's head/body and then incidentally into a players hand/arm is a good one. I'm not sure what the unfair advantage standard will be, but I think this is a really good first step.

As for sources, FIFA's website does not have the official Laws of the Game updated yet, but links to the IFAB website. I got a lot of this information from USSF's guidance given to coaches, players, and administrators.


 

Domer

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The rules seem to be a positive change overall, but the implementation has been odd. The commentators during Timbers-Sounders mentioned that players could leave at any point on the sideline, but that's not true. MLS won't adopt the new laws until 2020. However, the Leagues Cup tonight will be played under the new laws.
 

InstaFace

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I respect what they're trying to do with the handball rule, and this is actually a great first step towards it. They'll fuck it up, because it's still FIFA / IFAB, but at least they're focusing on the right problem and more or less looking at it the right way.

The final "unfair advantage" caveat, however, is a loophole that sinks the whole operation. You can drive a truck through that loophole. With that kind of ambiguity, referees and players will still default to the old zero-tolerance habits and claim that this-or-that unintentional contact must be called on the defender.

(A) Consider this not-uncommon case today: a defender closing out on an attacker looking to hit a cross charges at them with arms behind his back. As the cross goes up, he turns his body so he doesn't risk getting hit square in the face; his arms behind him end up getting struck, where they wouldn't have absent him turning. Clearly unintentional - and just as clearly, called handball today. They might argue it made him "unnaturally bigger" (except that he was already trying to make his wingspan unnaturally smaller), but the explicit rule should take that away now. However, they can just claim that the turn let him deflect a ball that, absent his hands, would have gone directly towards a goal-scoring opportunity - so, unfair advantage, call the PK. Takes away the spirit of the rule if you start arguing over whether there was an advantage created and whether it's fair or not.

(B) Really, every single one of those "NOT USUALLY" sub-bullets get kinda swamped by the last one. They were going to ground, it hit their support arm - as a result, the ball was deflected from its target on-goal, which must be an unfair advantage, so call the penalty.

(C) this does nothing about players who chest a ball, misjudge it slightly, and it actually hits towards the side of their chest and might incidentally contact their upper arm or shoulder area while they chest it.

(D) what would this do about the Sissoko handball at the start of the UCL Final? He's gesturing to a teammate, oblivious to the fact that Mane was looking to cross, so it's clearly unintentional. Just as clearly, the arm is at shoulder height in a position that isn't "natural" in the sense of "relaxed" (but it's "natural" in the sense of "people ordinarily make these gestures"). So you've still got a situation where it's in the attacker's best interests to try and fire at a defender's arms to draw a call, instead of trying to score.

Again, I like the general approach, because they're flipping the logic on its head - it used to be that ANY hand/arm contact was a foul UNLESS it met certain exceptions, and they're now trying to say that any unintentional contact is generally going to be OK UNLESS it meets certain specific conditions where it's a foul.
 

Zososoxfan

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I respect what they're trying to do with the handball rule, and this is actually a great first step towards it. They'll fuck it up, because it's still FIFA / IFAB, but at least they're focusing on the right problem and more or less looking at it the right way.

The final "unfair advantage" caveat, however, is a loophole that sinks the whole operation. You can drive a truck through that loophole. With that kind of ambiguity, referees and players will still default to the old zero-tolerance habits and claim that this-or-that unintentional contact must be called on the defender.

(A) Consider this not-uncommon case today: a defender closing out on an attacker looking to hit a cross charges at them with arms behind his back. As the cross goes up, he turns his body so he doesn't risk getting hit square in the face; his arms behind him end up getting struck, where they wouldn't have absent him turning. Clearly unintentional - and just as clearly, called handball today. They might argue it made him "unnaturally bigger" (except that he was already trying to make his wingspan unnaturally smaller), but the explicit rule should take that away now. However, they can just claim that the turn let him deflect a ball that, absent his hands, would have gone directly towards a goal-scoring opportunity - so, unfair advantage, call the PK. Takes away the spirit of the rule if you start arguing over whether there was an advantage created and whether it's fair or not.

(B) Really, every single one of those "NOT USUALLY" sub-bullets get kinda swamped by the last one. They were going to ground, it hit their support arm - as a result, the ball was deflected from its target on-goal, which must be an unfair advantage, so call the penalty.

(C) this does nothing about players who chest a ball, misjudge it slightly, and it actually hits towards the side of their chest and might incidentally contact their upper arm or shoulder area while they chest it.

(D) what would this do about the Sissoko handball at the start of the UCL Final? He's gesturing to a teammate, oblivious to the fact that Mane was looking to cross, so it's clearly unintentional. Just as clearly, the arm is at shoulder height in a position that isn't "natural" in the sense of "relaxed" (but it's "natural" in the sense of "people ordinarily make these gestures"). So you've still got a situation where it's in the attacker's best interests to try and fire at a defender's arms to draw a call, instead of trying to score.

Again, I like the general approach, because they're flipping the logic on its head - it used to be that ANY hand/arm contact was a foul UNLESS it met certain exceptions, and they're now trying to say that any unintentional contact is generally going to be OK UNLESS it meets certain specific conditions where it's a foul.
IAAL so I agree with your general understanding of how the rule is written, but think you are overstating the 'unfair advantage' catch-all. If the rule is applied essentially without that caveat (used only for the most extreme cases--a scoring chance going the other way), then I think the rule applies fairly well.

As for the Sissoko example:


His arm was returning down from an above-the-shoulder position and I think likely gets called a handball under the new rule for that reason. It's a very close call, but going from up to down as opposed to down to up for close calls makes some sense. Also, with this new rule, players and coaches will obviously practice keeping their arms down below that shoulder threshold. And if that goes uncalled, Liverpool have less reason to be upset. In other words, this rule as currently written has CLEARER guidelines at least.

Let's take a look at another notable example--Kimpembe vs. Man U.


The arm is clearly below the shoulder threshold but makes for a harder case under all the new guidelines. First, was it intentional? If yes, then it's clearly a pen. Assuming it's judged not intentional, the analysis shifts to whether the arm was close to his body or alternatively, far away enough from the body to be considered unnaturally bigger. It's a close call, but I think it would be correct to call it a handball under the new rule. My primary reason for this is the fact that it hit below the elbow and it would be easy enough for him to try and tuck that in a bit.
 

InstaFace

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Let's take a look at another notable example--Kimpembe vs. Man U.


The arm is clearly below the shoulder threshold but makes for a harder case under all the new guidelines. First, was it intentional? If yes, then it's clearly a pen. Assuming it's judged not intentional, the analysis shifts to whether the arm was close to his body or alternatively, far away enough from the body to be considered unnaturally bigger. It's a close call, but I think it would be correct to call it a handball under the new rule. My primary reason for this is the fact that it hit below the elbow and it would be easy enough for him to try and tuck that in a bit.
See, these are ones that I want to see NOT called, because I think it's clearly unintentional (he's looking away as it's kicked) and I find every part of the defender's motion to be completely natural. You need your arms in order to jump and then turn while jumping. His arms are exactly where you'd expect them to be, pretty much behind his body in his flight path because he's moving laterally (see 0:16"). He didn't take a horizontal flying leap with hands out, he's jumping upright and trying to avoid getting hit in the face. That's all it is, and I think that shouldn't be a penalty.

But as to the new rules:

In theory, you'd expect that the specific definition of "unnaturally bigger means and ONLY means arms above shoulder" would mean that it doesn't apply here, but then you've got that second "NOT USUALLY" bullet that confuses the explicit definition by bringing in the subjective standard of "close to their body and does not make their body unnaturally bigger". Well wait, didn't we just define "unnaturally bigger" as only a specific case above? Perhaps not, because now we've got this conflicting standard here that everyone will argue trumps that. So now a ruling can be defended in either direction and still leave both sides unsatisfied, because they can each point to arguments in their favor but also know the other side's arguments hold water too.

Any arm placement that occurs as a result of naturally trying to impose your body between the ball and the goal should be allowed, unless there's an intentional motion to intercept the ball (and I'm not sure I can think of 5 of those - your Luis Suarez goal-line incidents are few and far between). If you stand with your hands locked outwards like you're nailed to the cross, that's unnatural. Putting both hands to one side of your body is probably unnatural. But Kimpembe's motion there was to run, jump and turn, and so because I don't think that's against the spirit of the rules, I wouldn't want the letter of the rules to get interpreted to include that as a foul.
 

Zososoxfan

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See, these are ones that I want to see NOT called, because I think it's clearly unintentional (he's looking away as it's kicked) and I find every part of the defender's motion to be completely natural. You need your arms in order to jump and then turn while jumping. His arms are exactly where you'd expect them to be, pretty much behind his body in his flight path because he's moving laterally (see 0:16"). He didn't take a horizontal flying leap with hands out, he's jumping upright and trying to avoid getting hit in the face. That's all it is, and I think that shouldn't be a penalty.

But as to the new rules:

In theory, you'd expect that the specific definition of "unnaturally bigger means and ONLY means arms above shoulder" would mean that it doesn't apply here, but then you've got that second "NOT USUALLY" bullet that confuses the explicit definition by bringing in the subjective standard of "close to their body and does not make their body unnaturally bigger". Well wait, didn't we just define "unnaturally bigger" as only a specific case above? Perhaps not, because now we've got this conflicting standard here that everyone will argue trumps that. So now a ruling can be defended in either direction and still leave both sides unsatisfied, because they can each point to arguments in their favor but also know the other side's arguments hold water too.

Any arm placement that occurs as a result of naturally trying to impose your body between the ball and the goal should be allowed, unless there's an intentional motion to intercept the ball (and I'm not sure I can think of 5 of those - your Luis Suarez goal-line incidents are few and far between). If you stand with your hands locked outwards like you're nailed to the cross, that's unnatural. Putting both hands to one side of your body is probably unnatural. But Kimpembe's motion there was to run, jump and turn, and so because I don't think that's against the spirit of the rules, I wouldn't want the letter of the rules to get interpreted to include that as a foul.
That's a totally reasonable position and interpretation. I would only reply that it was likely unnecessary for the defender to run and jump wildly in such a manner and he clearly gained an advantage as a result. Unless you consider last ditch defending to be a skill and worthy of rewarding, if it helps us take some of the guess work out of this, then it's a necessary evil.

Going back to the handball discussion somewhere in 'Gazza (no idea where specifically), but the defender and the team put themselves in a position where making a wild jumping motion was an idea the defender considered. Just as he shouldn't be penalized for attempting to play the ball and incidental contact, he is fairly penalized for having to do such an exaggerated twirling jump.

Again, I don't feel that strongly about that particular call. I'm more interested in a rule that makes it clearer when it is or isn't a foul.
 

InstaFace

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Again, I don't feel that strongly about that particular call. I'm more interested in a rule that makes it clearer when it is or isn't a foul.
I completely agree. I'd be fine with a rule that makes Kimpembe's jump a foul if it hits his hands at all (to discourage the wild jumping), as long as it's entirely unambiguous and every defender can adjust their tactics accordingly.

What I feel more strongly about is that defenders trying to block a point-blank cross, who aren't making exaggerated or unnatural motions with their hands (but also don't have the time from kick-to-contact to react at all), should have safe harbor if it happens to hit them. In that case, the ball is playing them, rather than them playing the ball. If you need to balance the help that the rules give to both offense and defense, then maybe you need to draw a line on taking to the air vs remaining on the ground (or sliding), and the safe-harbor only applies to the latter.

Penalty kicks on play sequences that have a very low chance of scoring absolutely suck. I wish ill of Arjen Robben, and not much less towards Neymar. Scoring should be through the run of play (or set pieces), and PKs should really be reserved for situations where a defender cynically deprived an attacker of a high-probability scoring chance. There's a lot of gray area in between, but that's the principle I'm coming from - as a viewer, aesthetically, I want goals, not penalty kicks. If drawing a cheap PK is the easiest, most effective way to score, the problem is the rules, not the defenders. And thankfully, it seems IFAB has recognized that issue here.
 

Dummy Hoy

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Basketball sucks, and the intentional drawing of fouls (or pretending to be fouled) because you are out of ideas is a large reason why.

Edit: not that you were speaking to me
 

67YAZ

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cynically deprived an attacker of a high-probability scoring chance.
As a defender, I love this. I’ll grab, push, and whack away in the box so long as the attacker isn’t taking a direct shot on goal.

Instead, why not narrow the box to the width of the 6yd box?
 

InstaFace

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You must hate basketball.
I hate flopping (thankfully lessened in recent years) and particularly the tactical drawing of foul calls. Sometimes it's necessitated by the defense but when it rises to a strategy, it's ugly. Any follower of MBPC would know how much I (and many others) loathe James Harden's game.

Doesn't mean there isn't enough beauty in the rest of the game to compensate and make it enjoyable. It just means I hate that aspect of it.

Same goes for football, in hating flopping, disrespect of refs during stoppages, and tactical fouling. Those are ugly and I also think it's possible to eliminate them with better rule design and enforcement. I've also been on the "high-level matches should have 3 referees on-field" train for a while.

Criticizing an aspect of a game, much like criticizing an aspect of a country, doesn't mean you hate that game (or country). Indeed, it means you love it all the more because you care enough to take the time and think deeply about its underlying issues, and what could be done to make it better.

As a defender, I love this. I’ll grab, push, and whack away in the box so long as the attacker isn’t taking a direct shot on goal.

Instead, why not narrow the box to the width of the 6yd box?
We could probably look at narrowing the box. Part of the issue is that a possession that's towards the wide end of the box but also 18 yards out from the end line is high-quality, whereas one that's at the width of the box but right on the end line is a low-quality one, suitable for crossing (or pullbacks) but not for shooting.

As for defenders' cynical conduct, that's about enforcement and what's allowed to go on. Basketball started to call those fouls a few years ago, and it's much more watchable now. Again, having 3 refs would help, because 1 can't possibly watch 20 outfield players, even with sideline help. Point is if you couldn't get away with that shit, you wouldn't do it. Might make for more goals overall, too (and fewer injuries).
 

Morgan's Magic Snowplow

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I completely agree. I'd be fine with a rule that makes Kimpembe's jump a foul if it hits his hands at all (to discourage the wild jumping), as long as it's entirely unambiguous and every defender can adjust their tactics accordingly.

What I feel more strongly about is that defenders trying to block a point-blank cross, who aren't making exaggerated or unnatural motions with their hands (but also don't have the time from kick-to-contact to react at all), should have safe harbor if it happens to hit them. In that case, the ball is playing them, rather than them playing the ball. If you need to balance the help that the rules give to both offense and defense, then maybe you need to draw a line on taking to the air vs remaining on the ground (or sliding), and the safe-harbor only applies to the latter.

Penalty kicks on play sequences that have a very low chance of scoring absolutely suck. I wish ill of Arjen Robben, and not much less towards Neymar. Scoring should be through the run of play (or set pieces), and PKs should really be reserved for situations where a defender cynically deprived an attacker of a high-probability scoring chance. There's a lot of gray area in between, but that's the principle I'm coming from - as a viewer, aesthetically, I want goals, not penalty kicks. If drawing a cheap PK is the easiest, most effective way to score, the problem is the rules, not the defenders. And thankfully, it seems IFAB has recognized that issue here.
Agree completely with this post.

I think the much better approach to dealing with the problem would be to dispense with the attempt to interpret natural and natural body positions and just make unintentional handballs indirect free kicks, maybe with some carveout for very exceptional circumstances when the handball prevented an almost certain goal (ie, the ball would clearly have gone into the net had it not been unintentionally handled). So the Sissoko and Kimbempe situations produce indirect free kicks, which are at least equivalent if not slightly better goal scoring opportunities to the run-of-play opportunity that was disrupted, but not penalty kicks that are going to result in goals 70-80% of the time.
 

InstaFace

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Agree completely with this post.

I think the much better approach to dealing with the problem would be to dispense with the attempt to interpret natural and natural body positions and just make unintentional handballs indirect free kicks, maybe with some carveout for very exceptional circumstances when the handball prevented an almost certain goal (ie, the ball would clearly have gone into the net had it not been unintentionally handled). So the Sissoko and Kimbempe situations produce indirect free kicks, which are at least equivalent if not slightly better goal scoring opportunities to the run-of-play opportunity that was disrupted, but not penalty kicks that are going to result in goals 70-80% of the time.
All I want is justice.

 

67YAZ

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We could probably look at narrowing the box. Part of the issue is that a possession that's towards the wide end of the box but also 18 yards out from the end line is high-quality, whereas one that's at the width of the box but right on the end line is a low-quality one, suitable for crossing (or pullbacks) but not for shooting.
Here’s a blog post using piles of SPFL data to create a heat map for xg values. Maybe narrowing in to the width of the 6yd box is too narrow. Maybe the box should be 32yds wide.





 

Kliq

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Dortmund's wunderkind Youssoufa Moukoko, scored 6 goals in his U-19 debut. What is even more impressive is that he is only 14. This is coming off a season where he scored 46 goals as a 13 year old playing for BVD's U-17 side, and the year before that he scored 40 goals as a 12 year old for the U-17s. He isn't eligible to play in the Bundesliga until 2021-2022.

 

SoxFanInCali

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California. Duh.
The Vincent Kompany as player-manager experiment at Anderlecht has not started well.

After 4 games resulted in only 2 points, Kompany relinquished managerial duties on match days in order to focus on playing. With that move, he took over the captaincy from Samir Nasri. Well, that move didn't work out too well either, as Kompany had to come off with an injury and Anderlecht lost again. 2 points in 5 games is their worst start in 21 years.

Due to the injury, Kompany may end up missing his testimonial match at City on September 11th.
 

BelgianSoxFan

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Nov 11, 2003
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Los Gatos, CA
The Vincent Kompany as player-manager experiment at Anderlecht has not started well.

After 4 games resulted in only 2 points, Kompany relinquished managerial duties on match days in order to focus on playing. With that move, he took over the captaincy from Samir Nasri. Well, that move didn't work out too well either, as Kompany had to come off with an injury and Anderlecht lost again. 2 points in 5 games is their worst start in 21 years.

Due to the injury, Kompany may end up missing his testimonial match at City on September 11th.
Enjoying every minute of it, anderlecht is the Belgian MFY. This is like what would happen if the MFY were bought by a Bostonian, bring back Jeter as player/coach and start the season 2-15, after a pretty bad season last year. It is just glorious.