In October of 2016, I mentioned the Goal Kick signal as observed with the little cartoon character in the 2017 issue of the IFAB Law of the Game…pointing DOWN at 45 degrees…a signal usually recognized as the CR’s signal for a Penalty Kick.  I have started to see referees signal for the GK re-start in this manner and have heard stories that USSF instructors are starting to teach the signal this way.  So, I’ll ask this again…WHAT HAS HAPPENED TO THE GOAL KICK SIGNAL I WAS TAUGHT IN THE LATE 1980’s?

I have not seen any written commentary or memorandums from IFAB or USSF concerning a NEW signal, but as we all know from watching referees do wacky stuff, once something incorrect is taught to newer referees, it somehow becomes gospel.  And, when I addressed this issue in October of 2016, some of my fellow instructors chided me for challenging the “new” IFAB signal.  See below:

Is this a screw-up?

Perhaps USSF, and their new quad-fold POCKET GUIDE, has provided me with redemption.  The Center Referee’s arm is fully extended, parallel to the ground, and I’ll even stick my neck out further – pointing at the GOAL STRUCTURE – not the GOAL AREA.


After receiving this POCKET GUIDE in the mail with my 2017 Referee Registration, I also received an email from the U.S. Soccer Referee’s Department, Laws of the Game Update.  Within this email was a section entitled Laws of the Game Online Videos.  A click takes you to YouTube.  The Goal Kick Signal portion is located at 2:07.


Now my question to you naysayers…  Would USSF really produce the Pocket Guide AND a new Referee Signals Video without addressing a change in the signal for Goal Kick?

Go ahead, say it, “You’re right, Tom”