Foul play on the striker or handball by a defender in the penalty area are penalties according to the rules, but are assessed differently there.
In the discussion of thesis 1, this second thesis has already been addressed here in principle. Nevertheless, a few things could be mentioned in addition, something more specific to the topic.
First of all, it seems to have come to the attention of other people in the rules commissions that the phrase “there should have been a penalty” is heard much more often than the phrase “that was never a penalty” after a penalty has been awarded. It would only be window dressing to regard the longer and more intensive discussions after a mistake resulting in a goal (offside not recognised, penalty not awarded) as compensation, as these are more deeply remembered precisely because of the increased attention paid to this aspect.
Regarding case 1, there should have been a penalty, but there was not: the statement shown exists in many different forms, but always with comparable content. Presumably, the speaker intuitively notices at that moment that he says the sentence a little too often and soon gets into trouble explaining where this disproportion (was none, was given: rarely; was one, not recognised as such: often) might come from? So he softens things, at the same time soothing his own conscience: “it could have been given” or “a fifty-fifty decision” or “the opponent could not have complained if there had been a penalty” or simply shifting the problem to “another referee would certainly have pointed to the spot…” or even the quite banal “they were lucky that he did not point to the spot”.
The direction remains the same: no penalty given, the search for justifications (“he was standing a bit awkwardly” or “he must have assessed it differently” or “he turned a blind eye”). The rare reversed case of a dubious penalty is not only considered because of the immutability of the consequences (if the efler does not go in, it would apply here: “that was equalising justice”, and the case is forgotten) is brought into focus far more than the one not awarded despite recognised foul play. Because: by over-emphasising the error in the opposite direction through increased attention, one can create the illusion that such errors are equally distributed in both directions.
At the same time, however, there is also the aforementioned consequence: the referee involved, who has committed the mistake that has been uncovered and has thus become the undesirable focus of attention, will naturally try to keep the whistle muted in the subsequent case. So please only award penalties if they are absolutely clear?
At any rate, this seems to be an instruction to the referees (presumably issued before the 2016/2017 season?). In order to award a penalty, one should and must simply be sure. Even if this sounds understandable and logical: it definitely does not have the hoped-for and desired consequences. The players themselves act much more as a regulating factor. They ensure, with the nature of the offences, that there is practically never an absolutely clear penalty. They are guided by the way the rules are interpreted — also “intuitively”, of course — and behave in such a way that the referee always finds a reason to doubt them. They do not foul clearly in one situation, so that no doubt remains, and not at all in the other situation, so that it is clear: I have done nothing. They “work” the opponents, with tiny but obstructive offences, so that when the striker finally does go down, the commentators usually only have this insight for him: “That’s not enough for a penalty.”
Correct. It wasn’t enough. Because: not given. Because, instruction followed: not clear enough. Only, at this point, the speaker basically exposes himself (and thus the entire system): it was something, which was thus more than nothing, only it was just not enough of a foul.
An instruction to the referees is an attempt, which can be tried out as such with pleasure. Obviously, however, this has not been able to provide the desired clarity. There are constantly borderline situations in which the defenders try to avoid the clear foul, but nevertheless prevent the successful conclusion so successfully, but just constantly borderline legally.
Now one may well imagine the comparable situation outside the penalty area. Here, the decision is much easier for the referee. He perceives something, a disturbance, a short pull, an obstruction, and blows the whistle. And why not? It’s not like it’s a goal.
Likewise, it may well have been noticed that the topic of “punishable handball in the penalty area” is, at least at present, a frequently arising and fiercely discussed one (as of June 2017). At this point, this question, which is actually a highly explosive one, should be posed to the participants in the discussion: were there already the same number of such controversial situations before there were so many discussions and were these situations simply ignored in individual cases, not perceived, the decision simply accepted, this way or that way, as meaningless, an isolated case or whatever, or conversely, have there only been these many situations since there has been such lively discussion about them?
The view presented here also provides a well thought-out answer to this question, which one would probably not agree with at first glance. Nevertheless, it is offered:
The players themselves react in a very controlled manner and know very well where their arms are and should be if they are near the ball in the penalty area. A blocked shot, an intercepted cross, a short, half-high pass from close range, all situations in which a body spread would be useful – if it were tolerated. The many discussions triggered by the first, the second, the third scene, which were often enough interpreted to the advantage of those playing with their hands, now apparently gave them the opportunity to also get away with such a judgement. In other words, it seemed to be worthwhile to keep the arm a few centimetres away from the body.
If the ball does hit the arm or hand, experience teaches that the “sinner” is provided with a multitude of “excuses”. At least these are listed here, in the form of experts and reporters’ comments: “From that distance – he can’t get his arm away. Or these: “no unnatural posture” or also those “no widening of the body surface”, finally mentioned “there he even tries to get the arm away”.
All these sentences were spoken in this way and of course picked up by the potential offenders. The consequence: the arms can be anywhere, but should the ball stray there, there is a good chance of going unpunished. The further consequence: constant scenes of this kind with debatable decisions. What is the rule again? Dortmund coach Tuchel said in an interview during the 2016/2017 season: “I’m out of the discussion. Intentional, put on, protective hand, body widening, unnatural movement – I can no longer keep up. What is punishable?”
One may quietly recall how simple the coach’s instruction was in the 60s. He simply said: “In the penalty area: arms to the body! Otherwise you risk a penalty.” Did these endless pointless inconclusive discussions exist back then? Did the underlying situations even exist? Statement here: no. If a defender had not put his arm on the ball and it went against him, it didn’t matter whether it was unfortunate or unintentional or not even in a threatening situation: handball, penalty. Quite possible: nasty looks from the team-mates or the coach. Surely that didn’t have to happen?
An additional aspect, by the way, which has probably never been mentioned before, should nevertheless be mentioned here in the conviction that it was well thought out and well observed. An attacker who is looking for the way to the goal, the conclusion, often waits for the most favourable moment, looks for the gap. Any obstacle in the way has the same effect: it could stand in the way of scoring. This also includes a hand or an arm. Whether he consciously or unconsciously perceives this obstacle as such, legally or illegally, hardly matters. At least from his point of view. Even if it were all intuitive, the thought “there’s something in the way, I’d rather not shoot” would map this intuition well. So the defender not only increases the body’s surface area, whether it is worthy of punishment or not is up to the player, but he also represents an increased obstacle, which as such reduces the chance of scoring. So one might even assume that even if all such handball were penalised with a penalty kick, it would still be a good way of defending. Put obstacles in the way, of whatever kind, it will do some good.
The minimum consequence would have to be, according to the opinion represented here anyway: Handball in the penalty area – penalty kick. As the rules basically prescribe. However, there are other ways to regulate this in a sensible way.
Urgently mentioned at this point