Monday, 12 March 2012

QPR 'Goal' Against Bolton Would Not Have Counted

Regular readers of this blog will likely already know why QPR's 'goal'—where the whole of the ball passed over the goal line between the goalposts and under the crossbar—would not have counted in the first place. The EPL match took place on Saturday 10 March 2012 and finished 2—1 to Bolton Wanderers.

The header from QPR's Clint Hill (orange, furthest right) is 'saved' by Bolton's goalkeeper Adam Bogdan (purple)

In the 19', the ball crosses the goal line after it is headed by QPR's Clint Hill (orange) from a Joey Barton corner. Bolton's goalkeeper Adam Bogdan (purple) claws it away. After the match, QPR coach Mark Hughes said:
"Clearly the ball was over the line. The linesman is there to see that."

First, the AR could not have clearly seen the incident and therefore could not make the call. It is ridiculous for Hughes to blame the AR for not being able to clearly see that incident. The AR would have to have X-ray vision to be able to see the ball through the goalkeeper's arm and body.

Second, there is another reason why the goal would not have been allowed. Strangely (and perhaps unsurprisingly), no news reports or commentators mentioned this legitimate reason (e.g. see BBC Sport, Guardian, Telegraph, and Daily Mail reports).

What is the legitimate reason that justifies why the goal would've, and should've, been disallowed?


  1. With only this photo as evidence, it could be said that the other QPR player is positioned in a manner that is impeding the goal keeper. IFK going out.

  2. Graham Poll says do not blame referee Martin Atkinson for failing to spot the 'goal'. In fact, Mark Hughes, players, commentators and reporters were not blaming the referee.

    It appears most people are blaming AR Bob Pollock, and Graham Poll also says the AR should have indicated a goal had been scored.

  3. the corner kick was not taken legally.
    ie. not in or touching corner arc

  4. It looks the teammate was obstructing the goal keeper as the first commenter said..

  5. He's not obstructing the keeper if that's the position he took prior to the kick. However, he could very well be guilty of an offside if he's nearer the goal than the second-last defender (can't tell by this picture) and interfering with the keeper's ability to play the ball, which he indeed seems to be.

  6. On second thought, there looks to be a defender positioned at the post, so offside isn't an option.

  7. Since the ball went over the goal line there is no justification for continuing play. It's either a goal, a goal kick, or some type of foul which would result in a free kick for the defending team. No matter what, the ref team missed the call.

  8. Dear Smittypap,
    It doesn't matter if the opponent took his position obstructing the keeper before the kick, its obstructing regardless his position prior to the kick, otherwise all opponents place themselves there before the kick.

  9. A player can take a position obstructing the keeper--you see it all the time. He can't move into an obstructing position after the kick is taken.
    If the ref in this case believed that there was obstruction, he should have hit the whistle and awarded a free kick coming out.
    Since there was no free kick given, there is no justification for not awarding the goal.
    As far as the AR being blameless, that wrong. If the AR is where he belongs looking down the goal line, he should be able to see that the ball is over the goal line.

  10. Nathan of Perth21 March 2012 at 09:08

    Yeah, orange player on the left of screen is in an offside position and is interfering in play by preventing the keeper from effectively playing.

    Also, Anonymous 8:39, a ref will often not blow a defensive free kick when the ball has entered the keeper's possession, preferring to let the game flow since no one can challenge the keeper's possession of the ball or his releasing it from his hands. It also provides more opportunities for the counter attack, thus not disadvantaging a team for being fouled against.

    And the AR cannot be blamed because there was no position he could have taken that would have enabled him to see the ball was over the line in that circumstance. It is simply impossible and "guessing" the ball is over the line is unacceptable.

  11. Based on the photo it appears that there is a white player on the goal line at the far post (upper left of photo) so the orange player is not in offside position.
    So offside can not be a reason for not allowing the goal.
    Now you can argue that the orange player impeded the keeper but that's hard to judge from a static photo. He's close to the keeper and maybe preventing the keeper from getting to the ball, but it's not certain. Plus the orange player is allowed to play the ball although it appears that he is actually avoiding the ball.
    I think no matter what we come up with for saying that the goal could have been disallowed. The fact is that the referee crew missed the fact that the ball went out of play by crossing the goal line. So a whistle to stop play and some restart were required--either a free kick for the defense or a kick off.