Can You Be Offside From A Goal Kick? Why?

The offside rule has always been confusing for the newcomers to soccer. However, even some hardcore soccer fans still do not know that the offside rule does not apply in certain scenarios. One of these scenarios is the goal kick.

In soccer, you are not considered in an offside position if you get the ball directly from a goal kick. As long as you are the only player to touch the ball immediately after a goal kick, you are not in an offside position even if you have surpassed the last defender of the opponent team.

There are other scenarios during which the offside rule does not apply too. They are the following:

  • During a Throw-in
  • During a Corner kick
  • When you are on your side of the field

We will leave discussing these scenarios for another article, but if you are interested in learning about corner kicks in general, then you can check this article, and you can also learn about the flip throw-in here.

What exactly is a goal kick?

It’s true that offsides do not apply to goal kicks, but that’s it. The offside rule applies to most of the other game scenarios. Some people confuse a goal kick with other kicks that the goalkeeper performs.

So in this small section of the article, I am going to attempt to make that distinction for the people who do not know about it.

A goal kick is the kick that is performed by placing the ball in a stationary position on the ground, and kicking it forward. Any player other than the goalkeeper can take a goal kick.

All other scenarios that involve the goalkeeper kicking the ball are not considered a goal kick.

For example, if the goalkeeper kicks the ball out of their hands by throwing the ball in front of them then kicking it in mid air, then the offside rule will still apply here because the game is already in play when the goalkeeper is holding the ball in their hands.

I think this should have clarified the difference between the goal kick and other kicks performed by the goalkeeper or any other player on the soccer field. With that said, we can move on to the final section of this article.

Why is there no offside from a goal kick?

There isn’t an official reason for why the offside rule doesn’t apply during a goal kick. One can argue that it’s just a rule that should not be questioned. However, there are some non-official but logical reasons behind this rule that we can discuss.

As we have mentioned before, you also can’t be in an offside position from a throw-in or from a corner kick. Like the goal kick, these 2 set pieces are taken after the ball leaves the rectangular field.

So the reasoning behind the rule could be that you can’t be in an offside position if the ball was already outside the field of play and your team is putting it back in.

But theories aside, there are some benefits of relaxing the offside rule when it comes to goal kicks.

Since no player is in an offside position during a goal kick, then the players of the offensive team will try to spread forward and locate themselves inside the opponent’s side of the field in order to receive the ball and get an advantage.

This will force the defensive team to keep some of their players close to their net in order to defend their net in case the opponent players receive the ball.

What does all of this mean? It means that the “no offside rule” during a goal kick helps the team taking the goal kick in transferring the pressure to the opponent’s side of the field instead of their own side.

If the rule did not exist, then the whole opponent team could just run towards the other half of the field, and this can cause a lot of trouble for the team taking the goal kick.

With that said, I will end my article here. Here is a summary of what you have just read.

A player is not considered to be in an offside position if they receive the ball immediately from a goal kick. One of the reasons behind this rule could be to make sure that both teams are spread evenly across the whole field during a goal kick instead of leaning towards one side of the field.