UEFA lays down formal own goal guidelines

March 30, 2008

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VADUZ (Liechtenstein), March 29: UEFA has laid down formal guidelines to determine an own goal in matches it organises, European soccer’s governing body said on Friday.

“There has been a lot of debate over deflected goals and whether they should be awarded to the player who originally shot at goal or the player who got the last touch,” president Michel Platini told reporters. “We want to clear the issue up and have the same rules at every match.”

Platini said referees would be told to award a goal to the player who intended to score, provided the ball was already heading towards the net when the deflection occurred.

Off-target shots diverted into the net will be attributed to the player who deflects the ball.

Platini acknowledged the guidelines were already being observed informally by most referees but it would be formally “codified” immediately for Champions League, UEFA Cup and international matches.—Reuters