This week’s Play of the Week looks at three incidents over the weekend from two MLS matches.
Two of the incidents took place at FC Dallas vs. Los Angeles Galaxy and the other during Columbus Crew vs. New York Red Bulls.
PRO Training & Development Manager Paul Rejer focuses on offsides from free-kicks, exceptional calls from moving play and how important it is for ARs to be level with the second last defender and keep their concentration at all times.
Rejer explained: “Blas Perez of Dallas was in an offside position when the first free-kick was taken, the AR Kevin Duliba should have been aware of this as offside is his number one priority and focus.
“As soon as the kicker plays the ball, the AR should focus on the offside player. Then, as in this case, as soon as he plays the ball he is interfering with play. Therefore, the goal should have been disallowed.
“Later in the game, George John of Dallas is in an offside position from a free-kick. When the delivery came over he made a challenge for the ball and, at this point, the AR should have raised his flag for offside – this time for interfering with an opponent.
“Using the very same process he should have been aware of the offside player from the outset and concentrated on him and raised the flag when he became active.
“In the Columbus Crew vs. New York Red Bulls game, again from a free-kick there was a player in an offside position and when the ball was crossed he challenged for the ball. At the same time, referee Allen Chapman noticed an offense in the penalty area.
“Using the same process as before, AR Adam Garner should have focused on the offside player and raised his flag when he challenged. Unfortunately he is well out of position and therefore his view was distorted as he had the wrong angle on it.
“So there are valuable lessons to be learned in terms of positioning, awareness and concentration here to get these crucial offside calls correct.”