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Sin bins to be trialled by the FA – what are the other rules changes which have come and gone in the game?

From golden goal to kick-ins, football has tried to bring in new laws over time but most are a major flop

THE Football Association are planning to trial the introduction of sin bins in the lower leagues of English football.

From the seventh tier of the football pyramid down, leagues will get the chance to take part in the pilot scheme which would see players dismissed for a ten-minute period.

Players will be sin-binned instead of being booked for dissent

Times Newspapers Ltd
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Players will be sin-binned instead of being booked for dissent

They also want Sunday Leagues and Youth Leagues to adopt the new law, which would see the ref sin-bin someone for cases of dissent.


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It is the latest new law that has been cleared for trial – and SunSport looks at six previous ones that failed to last the course.

Kick-ins replace throw-ins

Sepp Blatter confidently predicted in 1994: “In two years the kick-in will replace the throw-in in the laws of the game and then we will have an even faster game than we have now.”

The idea was trialled in England’s sevent tier, the Diadora League, in the 1994-95 season, as well as lower leagues in Belgium and Hungary.

Chertsey Town show off their skills with touch line kick from 1994

It was even thought that kick-ins could be used at Euro 96 when England hosted the European Championships.

Players were given the option of kicking in instead of throwing if they raised their arms first to indicate a kick.

However it proved unpopular with managers and players as it encouraged teams to go Route One and launch the ball upfield as far as possible.

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St Albans City manager Allan Cockram even told his players they would be sacked if they did it.

The trial was quietly dropped and the law never saw the light of day.

Goalkeepers handling outside their area

The early rules of football failed to even mention a specialist goalkeeper, but in 1870 the laws were tweaked so keepers "may, within his own half of the field of play, use his hands but shall not carry the ball."

As of the time, players respected the spirit of the rule until along came Leigh Roose - a physically imposing Welshman who played for Everton, Celtic, Aston Villa and Arsenal.

Roose spotted the loophole in the no carrying rule by bouncing the ball right up to the halfway line to launch attacks.

His strength allowed him to knock opponents out of the way and give his sides a huge advantage - much to the dismay of of their opponents.

Shortly afterwards the FA adapted the laws to limit the use of hands to only being allowed in the penalty area.

Leigh Roose saw a way round the handling rules so the laws of the game were changed

PA:Press Association
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Leigh Roose saw a way round the handling rules so the laws of the game were changed

Ten yard advance for dissent

With lack of respect from players to officials at an all-time high, the Premier League were given permission in 2000 to allow officials to advance play ten yards in cases of player dissent.

Based on the hugely successful rule in rugby, the idea had been well received on trial in the Auto Windscreens Shield competition and refs reported a huge drop in abuse from players.

But the new law had two glaring problems - firstly that a ref had to issue a yellow card when deciding to advance play, which made officials reluctant to double punish teams or players.

Secondly, play could not be advanced into the penalty area where a spot-kick could be awarded - and defending teams figured out this could work to their advantage.

Former referee Jeff Winter revealed the problems with the ten yard punishment rule for dissent

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Former referee Jeff Winter revealed the problems with the ten yard punishment rule for dissent

 

Former ref Jeff Winter remembers awarding Manchester United a free-kick against Sunderland 26-yards out, and set-piece expert David Beckham was preparing to shoot.

Winter said: "A Sunderland player deliberately broke from the wall before the free-kick was taken, knowing the ref would move it forward to the edge of the area and Beckham would have less space to get the ball up over the wall and down again.

"He didn't score. Other teams encountered a similar problem."

Despite officials claiming abuse had reduced overall, Fifa surprisingly cancelled the law in 2005 without warning."

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US shoot-out

Football fans in America hated the idea of a match being drawn, so in 1975 the North American Soccer League decided all matches, including league games, had to have a winner.

Initially this was done using the tried and tested penalty kick format, but two years later they came up with new method copying the one used in Ice Hockey.

Players would have to run from 35-yards out and beat the goalkeeper, all against the clock counting down from five seconds.

The 1981 Soccer Bowl between Chicago Sting and New York Cosmos was decided by the American-style 35-yard shootout

Dutch maestro Johan Cruyff loved it, and called on the rest of the world to follow suit, while Rodney Marsh said: "Penalties are not conducive to skill, players just stepping up and smashing the ball at the goal until somebody misses.

"It’s far better to have players dribble up from 35 yards and shoot – that is skill. It’s fantastic to watch."

The shoot-outs were indeed entertaining as players lost their bottle and goalkeepers had more of a chance to be the hero.

But when the NASL collapsed in 1982, so did the US shoot-out.

The Golden Goal

In an effort to add some excitement to matches that went to extra-time, some bright spark at Fifa decided the way to do this was to make the added 30 minutes a game of sudden death.

Next team to score wins, just like back in the playground. Surely that was a sure-fire winner?

Germany won Euro 96 thanks to a Golden Goal at Wembley

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Germany won Euro 96 thanks to a Golden Goal at Wembley

Except when you face elimination from a World Cup and know you will be out if you concede a goal, that natural reaction is to make sure you don't leave yourself wide open.

And the best way to do that? Avoid pushing any extra players forward and making sure no player is caught out of position. Ever.

Fifa implemented the new lay in 1993, and over the next seven years we were treated to so extra-time periods so dismal it was hardly worth even playing them.

There were some notable Golden Goal moments, not least the very first won at Euro 96 when Germany won the title thanks to a 95th minute strike from Oliver Bierhoff to beat Czech Republic 2-1.

Silver Goal

Not content with getting it wrong with the Golden Goal, officials tried vainly to save some kind of face when they tweaked the rules to come up with the Silver Goal.

Basically it was the Golden Goal, except the team who went behind would have the remainder of the period of extra-time being played to claw their way back into the game.

Greece won a European Championship game by the silver goal rule when they scored seconds before the end of the first period of extra-time

Reuters
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Greece won a European Championship game by the silver goal rule when they scored seconds before the end of the first period of extra-time

Critics immediately raised to issue that if it was a windy day, one team would gain an unfair advantage, and there was another problem when Greece beat Cezch Republic by a silver goal in the semi-final of Euro 2004.

Traianos Dellas was the Greek hero, scoring in the final seconds of the first period - afford the Czechs zero time to get back on level terms, making a mockery of the system.

The experiment was just as much a flop and the whole idea was thrown out in 2004.