English referees have been told to take a firmer stance on players trying to subvert recent FIFA amendments on the offside law.
The meeting was called after a number of controversial incidents in recent matches, and in particularl one in Tuesday’s game between Leicester City and Bolton Wanderers .
Bolton manager Sam Allardyce instructed two of his players to stand several yards offside at free kicks with the aim of distracting Leicester goalkeeper Ian Walker. Afterwards, Allardyce called on FIFA to scrap the new guidelines.
FA, Pemier League and Football League representatives met on Friday and agreed to instruct referees that if they think the actions of a player in an offside position deceive or distract an opponent, that player must be given offside.
“It was generally felt that a decision needed to be taken on how to apply this interpretation to the type of situations we have seen during the past week, particularly in relation to attacking free kicks,” the FA’s head of refereeing John Baker told the ruling body’s website.
“The Laws of the Game have not been changed, nor has the interpretation. We have simply sought to clarify the manner in which it should applied by referees.”