The 133rd AGM of The International FA Board (The IFAB) in Aberdeen, Scotland on 2 March 2019 approved a number of amendments to, and clarifications of, the Laws of the Game for 2019/20.

Three changes were approved following 2 years of worldwide experiments:

• The introduction of yellow and red cards for misconduct by team officials

• A player being substituted leaving the field at the nearest point on the boundary line

• At a goal kick and a free kick for the defending team in their own penalty area, the ball is in play as soon the kick is taken (it can be played before it leaves the penalty area) Other changes include: clearer wording for ‘handball’, attacking team players must be at least 1m away from a defensive ‘wall’, the goalkeeper only has to have one foot on the goal line at a penalty kick, and a new dropped ball procedure (including a dropped ball being awarded if the ball hits a match official and goes into the goal, team possession changes or a promising attack starts). This document summarises the main changes only – a more detailed version with the exact text of all the changes may be found in the document ‘Laws of the Game 2019-20 – Changes and clarifications’; both documents are available on The IFAB’s website ( ).

Downloadable versions of the Laws of the Game 2019/20 in English, French, German and Spanish will be available in mid/late May on The IFAB’s website, along with details of the new IFAB Laws of the Game app.

All changes come into force on 1st June 2019. Competitions starting before that date may apply the changes from the start of their competition, at an agreed point during the competition (e.g. after the mid-season break) or may delay them until no later than the start of the next competition.

Laws of the Game 2019/20 Changes and clarifications

Laws of the Game 2019/20 Summary

The philosophy and spirit of the Laws

Football is the greatest sport on earth. It is played in every country and at many different levels. The Laws of the Game are the same for all football throughout the world from the FIFA World CupTM Final through to a game between young children in a remote village.

That the same Laws apply in every match in every confederation, country, town and village throughout the world is a considerable strength which must be preserved. This is also an opportunity which must be harnessed for the good of football everywhere.

Football must have Laws which keep the game ‘fair’ as a crucial foundation of the beauty of the ‘beautiful game’ is its fairness – this is a vital feature of the ‘spirit’ of the game. The best matches are those where the referee is rarely needed as the players play with respect for each other, the match officials and the Laws.

The integrity of the Laws, and the referees who apply them, must always be protected and respected. All those in authority, especially coaches and team captains, have a clear responsibility to the game to respect the match officials and their decisions.

Details of all Law changes 2017/18

The following are the changes to the Laws of the Game for 2017/18. For each change the old
wording (where appropriate) and the new/changed/additional wording are given, followed
by an explanation for the change.
The text shown in the ‘old text’ boxes may be the exact previous text or a more general
outline of the meaning of the previous text.
Offences and infringements
Many languages do not have different words for ‘offence’ and ‘infringement’, the difference is
not clearly understood (even by English experts) and their use inconsistent e.g. a player can
be an ‘offender’ but not an ‘infringer’. To make the Laws clearer
and to assist translation,‘offence’ and ‘offend’ replace ‘infringement’ and ‘infringe’.

New U.S. Soccer Official Uniform Shirt features an updated design and new colors that is now available in both men's and women's cuts for the first time.
More information can be found at
The current official jersey uniform style can still be worn during matches through 2018.
Keep in mind that during this period, crews can mix styles but must wear the same color for a game.

Suggest buying Yellow Jersey first, if you are enjoying refereeing then Green next and then Blue, Black & Red.  If you save a % of referee fees each day towards uniform costs it helps manage your funds.