England goalkeeper Mary Earps’ penalty save against Spain in the FIFA Women’s World Cup final has caused controversy after fans spotted that the English No.1 appeared to be off the goal-line when the spot-kick was taken.
Spain, leading 1-0 in the game after an Olga Carmona goal, got an opportunity to double it when Keira Walsh’s hand-ball was penalised with a spot-kick, following a VAR check and another by the referee on the monitor.
Hermoso took the kick which was saved by Earps, who plays for Manchester United in the Women’s Super League.
The game continued on, with the score 1-0 in favour of Spain. But fans, on social media, began to dispute the legality of Earps’ save as she was seen to have moved out of her line before Hermoso took the shot.
According to rules by FA, during a penalty kick ‘The defending goalkeeper must remain on the goal line, facing the kicker, between the goalposts until the ball is kicked. When the ball is kicked, the defending goalkeeper must have at least part of one foot touching, in line with, or behind, the goal line.’
The law also stipulates that ‘if the ball is prevented from entering the goal by the goalkeeper, the kick is retaken. If the goalkeeper’s offence results in the kick being retaken, the goalkeeper is warned for the first offence in the game and cautioned for any subsequent offence(s) in the game‘
However later, FIFA later issued a clarification explaining why the penalty wasn’t retaken, saying that the Video Assistant Referee had taken due diligence and determined Earps’ feet was on the line when the kick was taken.
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