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Goal or no goal in Philadelphia? Referee waves it off (video)

Sep 14, 2013, 8:41 PM EDT

Keon Daniel 2

The story early in Houston’s important match at Philadelphia is missed chances and one goal that was for Philadelphia, but then wasn’t.

Cam Weaver missed two chances in rapid succession for Houston in the 21st minute, including one unbelievable opportunity with the goal wide open. A couple of minutes later, Conor Casey missed a golden chance for Philadelphia at PPL Park.

Not long after that, in the 31st minute Keon Daniel’s free kick from about 40 yards, aimed toward a gaggle of players at the six-yard mark, flies directly in over Houston goalkeeper Tally Hall. Clearly, Hall has had better moments; it was a pretty egregious error from a solid ‘keeper, one who even got into Jurgen Klinsmann’s national team camp earlier this year.

The issue was in Amobi Okugo’s starting position on the free kick. He was offside (although just barely). So even though he didn’t touch the ball, officials put their heads together to decide that Philadelphia’s young center back had impeded or interfered with Hall’s ability to reach the ball.

Okugo really didn’t, because Hall had rushed out of goal so imprudently, he was not going to reach Daniel’s free kick.

Either way, the goal was disallowed and the half finished in a scoreless tie.

Here is the “goal” in question:


  1. talgrath - Sep 14, 2013 at 9:34 PM

    From the clip it is impossible to tell if the most forward Union player was offside or not, the clip doesn’t show an overhead until after the ball is well into the air.

  2. braxtonrob - Sep 15, 2013 at 5:31 PM

    Good call; Tall Hall “rushed out of goal” in part to defend against the offsides Okugo. Incredibly stupid on Okugo’s part. Good call.

  3. geojock - Sep 16, 2013 at 4:55 PM

    If your player is offside, no matter what he is doing, you don’t have much of an argument against a goal called off. Yes, the ref can allow the goal if the player did not influence the play, but it is tough to not influence the play whatsoever.

  4. chadmoon1 - Sep 16, 2013 at 5:34 PM

    That’s not even a question. He is in an offside position and makes contact with the keeper. No goal.

  5. donjuego - Sep 16, 2013 at 5:49 PM

    Come on Steve Davis. Your better than this.

    FIFA clearly says that actively involved in play includes movements that distract an opponent making a play on the ball. Whether or not Hall would have correctly judged the flight of the ball or not is not a factor in the decision. Not one bit. And two minutes of research on the internet would confirm that.

    All of the information available portrays “not being active” as walking away, not moving, stepping out of bounds, etc. Charging the ball to make a play on it is active. And it likely affects the opponent.

    This is a solid decision by the referee. What is especially weak is the analysis that whether or not Hall misjudged it is a factor to be considered. It is not. That is debatable.

  6. donjuego - Sep 16, 2013 at 5:50 PM

    Errrr … NOT debatable.

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