What is Offsides in Soccer: An In-depth Look at the Rule and How it Works | Conquer Pickup Sports App

Jake Yoffee
Content Specialist
July 10, 2023
 —  
Blog

Soccer is a sport that has been around for over a century, and while the rules may seem simple, there are a lot of intricate details that many people are not aware of. One such rule is the offside rule. What is offsides in soccer? Simply put, it is a rule designed to prevent attacking players from gaining an unfair advantage by being in an offside position. In this blog post, we will take an in-depth look at the offside rule in soccer, how it works, and provide examples to help you better understand. 

To understand the offside rule, it is important to first understand what an offside position is. A player is in an offside position if they are closer to the opposing team's goal line than both the ball and the second-to-last defender, also known as the last defender. The last defender may be the goalkeeper or another player on the field, but they must be closer to the goal line than any attacking player in order for them to be considered onside.

It is important to note that simply being in an offside position is not enough to make a player offside. A player is only considered offside if they are involved in active play, which can be interpreted as interfering with play, interfering with an opponent, or gaining an advantage by being in that position. If the player in the offside position is not involved in active play, the referee will typically let the game continue. 

Now that we understand what an offside position is, let's take a closer look at the rule itself. If a player is in an offside position and involved in active play when the ball is played to them, the linesman or assistant referee (AR) will raise their flag to signal an offside offence. At this point, the game is momentarily stopped, and a free-kick is awarded to the opposing team. 

It is worth noting that the offside rule does not apply on goal kicks, throw-ins, or corner kicks. Additionally, a player cannot be offside if the ball is played backwards or sideways, as opposed to forwards. 

Offsides rule in soccer can be a controversial topic, and it is not uncommon for teams to dispute the AR's flag. However, it is essential to keep in mind that the AR is responsible for making this judgement call, and their decision is final. 

Example: To help better illustrate the offside rule, let's consider the following scenario: Alex is in an offside position when his teammate John passes the ball in his direction. Alex is near the last defender at this point, but he is still offside. If Alex continues running towards the ball, the linesman will raise their flag and signal an offside offence. The game will then be momentarily stopped, and a free-kick will be awarded to the other team. 

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Are you looking to put your soccer IQ to the test. Look no further than booking your spot in pickup soccer and futsal on the Conquer App. There are plenty of competitive games on the app. If you don’t have time to commit to a league, then the Conquer App is perfect for you.

Conclusion:

The offside rule is an essential part of soccer, designed to prevent attacking players from gaining an unfair advantage. While it can be a controversial topic, it is important for teams and players to understand the rule to ensure fair play. Remember, a player is only considered offside if they are involved in active play, and the AR's flag is the final decision. Most pickup soccer games do not use the offsides rule, however it is important to know when playing games that enforce offsides. Sharpen your skills by hopping into a pickup game on the Conquer App!

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