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Premier League SEVEN new rules this season including confirmed five substitutes and penalty kick changes explained.


Image courtesy of IFAB

Law 8 – Start and restart of play

This law now begins with the words “the referee tosses a coin” for the choice of kick-off and ends, where previously it just said a coin toss was required but not the identity of the overseer. Seriously!

Law 3 – Players

While competitions have had the option of allowing up to five subs per match after the pandemic, this was only a temporary measure. This has now been made permanent and was a significant factor in the Prem and EFL adopting this law change for next term. Atleast four or five changes were made by 13 of the 20 clubs in their opening fixtures as the number of changes allowed rose from three.

Pep Lijnders on how the switch to five substitutes has saved football: 

"The big thing this season and I think the most decisive aspect of this season will be how teams use the five subs because that will change massively the Premier League." Pep told The Independent.(alert-success)

Law 11.2 - Offside offence

The International FA Board has now “clarified” the guidelines to referees over what constitutes “deliberate” playing of the ball by defenders that resets play and puts the attacker in an onside position.

Law 10 – Determining the outcome of a match

This has seen the addition of the words “or team official” to the participants who can be booked or dismissed during a penalty shoot-out.

Law 12 – Fouls and misconduct relating to goalkeeper handling

This change has tidied up some dodgy wording to confirm a goalkeeper can handle the ball inside their own penalty area without being dismissed for denying an obvious goal-scoring opportunity.

Law 12 – Fouls and misconduct relating to leaving the field of play to commit an offence against an outside agent.

 Twitter images

This covers a scenario in which a player leaves the pitch to assault an “outside agent” - such as a fan, opposition player or coaching team member on the bench or dug-out, or a pitch invader.

The referee will now award an indirect free-kick at the point on the pitch where he left the field of play, although only if the ball was “in play” at the time. If the ball was out of play, the due restart (kick-off, throw-in, free-kick, corner or goal-kick) applies.

Law 14 – The penalty kick

Goalkeepers can now stand with one foot behind the line to face a penalty kick - allowing them to push off from deeper and have more forward momentum.

And lastly, no more taking the knee before matches.

The decision has been taken that players will stop taking the knee in protest against racism before the start of matches. This has been happening since the start of the 2020/21 season following global anger at police involvement in the death of George Floyd, but there has been a growing feeling that the symbolism of the gesture had been waning in recent months.

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