Case Study: Goal Line Position on Corner Pays Off Again

Referee Phil Dowd took up a position on the goal line for a crucial last-second corner kick in an FA Cup tie betwteen Oldham and Everton.  His choice of positions paid off handsomely.

On what would be the last play of the match, Oldham (blue) pushed everyone forward for a corner kick, including their goalkeeper.  The usual grabbing and pushing ensued, and when the corner was finally taken, the attacking goalkeeper leaped into the air with his arms raised high over his head.  From one angle, it appears the ball hits his outstretched hand and goes in the goal – as evidenced by the reaction of the Everton defenders on that side of the ball.

Case Study # 6-2013
Date 16 Feb 2013
Competition FA Cup, 5th Round Proper
Fixture/Result Oldham 2 – 2 Everton
Referee/Badge Phil Dowd, Select Group
At Issue Dowd took up a position on the goal line during the crucial last second corner kick.

But Referee Phil Dowd had wisely taken up a goal line position for this (and the previous) corner and was in perfect position to see that the ball was, in fact, headed in by Oldham player #14.

I have to ask the detractors: would the referee been able to get the call right from a “traditional” position near the top of the penalty area?  We probably can’t answer that question with any degree of certainty, but we can say that he was able to make the correct call from his “alternative” goal line position.

Maybe we can agree that there are at least some times where the goal line position on a corner kick is a good idea?

6 responses to “Case Study: Goal Line Position on Corner Pays Off Again”

  1. Many times I found the goal line position to be useful, especially when you have read the game and realize there will be hard charging to the goal. Also helps with catching players interfering with the keeper.


  2. Good case study. I saw the match, but appreciate you posting this. Depending on the type of play occurring – a conventional referee position isn’t the place to be. That’s where experience comes in. You’ve got to go with what your gut is telling you will probably happen. In this case; lots of pulling, pushing, grabbing, ball right on the line. Well done, Mr. Dowd!


  3. I watched it live and noted the same thing(s) regarding the goal and the positioning.

    We watched it several times to confirm.


  4. The best moment of my life supporting Oldham – and thankful to Dowd for not ruling it out incorrectly which would have been devastating to all in the home sections of the ground!


  5. The end of the game when you fully intend for the pending corner kick to be the final attack is the perfect time to take up this alternate position because the primary reason not to do it, being out of position for the counter-attack, is no longer relevant.


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