This issue has been my biggest bug-bear since it was introduced, I know Terry’s goal today is not the clearest example of why the offside rule is b@llocks, but it is possibly the most high profile and obviously fresh in people’s thinking. (in-fact it may not have been offside at all, but that would ruin my whole argument!).
So, to the question. When is an attacking player who is ahead of the last defender not classed as offside? This issue is more grey and blurred than that infamous Manchester United grey tiled kit.
Quite clearly even if Drogba never touched the ball after Terry’s header, he is interfering with play as Van Der Sar is obviously conscience of his presence and uncertain whether he will make contact with the ball. Without Drogba there, Van Der Sar mind is free to concentrate on the trajectory and placement of Terry’s header without anticipating another touch. Allowing him more time to potentially save the shot.
To exagarate my stance on the issue i’ll paraphrasing one my favourite quotes on the subject: ” The only way a player cannot be interfering with play is if he’s not on the field”
I find it absolutely illogical and absurd that this rule change to offsides has been introduced. I think it’s sensible to suggest that even if a player does not interfere with play he should still be classed as offside because his position on the pitch (whether in an offside position or not) the opposition defence are conscience of him. So it effects how they behave when defending.
I’m all for giving attackers the advantage but a defender’s game is hard enough without them having to play offside, then still stay alert within a second phase of play just incase the guy who is offside leaves the ball (making him inactive) leading to the potential of any other player arriving from an onside position. It makes a mockery of the whole game.
In future I will add in more video examples of clear faults in the relation to the offside rule, if and when I manage to find them:
As it shows at 1.23 on the video below the striker who competes for the ball in the air and Gallas the eventual scorer are both offside when the ball is played. It is irrelevant whether they touch the ball, they are influencing play. Gallas has an advantage once Henry passes it by starting in an offside position, as he is slightly ahead of the defenders to the goal, meaning he can get in and score. The only way Gallas would not have that advantage is if the defenders moved back to play Gallas onside but that would not make defensive sense at all. Surely it is logical to suggest as soon as Gallas or the player competing for the ball in the air attempt to get the bal the play should be called offside? (Obviously i’m ignoring the 2 hand-balls as i’m arguing against the offside rule, but add the 2 hand-balls and that’s 4 reasons why that goal should not have been given, talk about luck of the Irish hey!)
Here’s a more recent clear offside goal that was given because Van Persie was judged to be inactive because he did not touch the ball despite the fact he played a crucial part in deceiving the goalkeeper.