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Question Number: 30552

Law 14 - Penalty kick 6/27/2016

RE: Adult

John J. O'Hara of Berlin, New Jersey USA asks...

On a penalty kick- Once the referee blows his whistle, is there a time limit on when the attempt must take place? Also, I've seen penalty kickers stutter-step or even hesitate before kicking in an apparent attempt to deceive the goalkeeper. Comment?

Answer provided by Referee Richard Dawson

Hi John,
no actual time limit set in stone.
Feinting is permitted as long as they do not stop or backup. The time limit is what a reasoned referee would consider as necessary but a simple verbal warm to get on with it probably halts a need to caution for stupidity. Think on the 6 seconds for keeper possession and a bit more for the occasional lapse of judgement.

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Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi John
There is no time limit on when a kick can be taken after the referee signals for the kick to be taken. Most kickers are eager to get on with it so it is not an issue in the game. If the referee believes that there is deliberate time wasting at any restart he can caution a player for that. I have never seen it happen on a penalty kick while I gave seen it if free kicks.
Feinting is permitted at any restart including a penalty kick. So a stutter step, change of pace is allowed. What is not allowed is a stop by the player which is done to commit a goalkeeper to a movement and then the ball is dispatched in the opposite direction. This was a particular problem in South America where IFAB had to step in to outlaw this tactic with a caution. It was called a Paradinha and while it was always illegal it became accepted in South America as it was not clearly spelled out in Law.
Here are videos of the type of illegal feint that is now a caution and an IDFK to the defending team. It is no longer a retake.
You will note that there is a world if difference between those and the stutter step or legal feint which is allowed.

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