UEFA Football Board Recommends Amendments to Handball Rules

The Football Board of the Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) in its inaugural meeting discussed various matters including player behaviour, handball rule, etc[1]. and suggested changes in the handball rules for the next season. The recommendations put forth by the Board with respect to the Laws of the Game are as follows: –

  • It should be clarified by the UEFA in the guidelines for the next season that in case the ball is previously deflected from the player’s own body and in particular, when the direction of the ball isn’t towards the goal, the same does not constitute a handball offence.
  • Every handball should not automatically lead to cautioning of players after every shot at a goal.
  • Referees have to be “more decisive” in cautioning when players demonstrate unsporting behaviour by pretending to be injured or fouled, etc.
  • Only in circumstances where the players “deliberately and intentionally” touch the ball with their hand or arm, the players should be sent off. In all other scenarios of handball offences, cautioning the players should suffice. Accordingly, Law 12 of the Laws of the Game should be amended.

Coaches such as Robbie Keane, Jurgen Klinsmann, Zinedine Zidane and others attended the meeting held in Nyon, Switzerland. The members of the Board who could not attend were consulted on the matters discussed at the meeting.