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The Laws of Soccer 101: The Goal Kick

The 16th Law of Soccer revolves around the goal kick. As you can probably imagine, it is perhaps the most boring rule in the entire FIFA rulebook. I mean, it’s so simple, short and self-explanatory, I won’t be quizzing you on it, and I definitely won’t waste a ton of your time discussing the “intricacies” of the rule, because (frankly) there are none.

Here is the rule: If the ball goes over the goal line (and not into the net) and was last touched by a member of the attacking team, a goal kick can be taken by any member of the defending team (but typically by the GK). A goal kick can be taken from anywhere in the box and it can result in a goal (anyone ever seen that?). That’s it. It’s that simple.

Want to know something that isn’t simple? Understanding the 16th Amendment to the US Constitution. It says the federal government can tax your income however it likes without regard to state’s rights, census information, or anything else in the world. It’s one of the most convoluted rules in American legal history. Why?

Because it flies in the face of so many other rules about equality, rationality and democracy. I am not against the collection of a federal income tax, but I think the US Constitution shouldn’t contain a provision basically giving Congress carte blanche to collect that tax however they like. But, I will get off my soap box and remind you that a goal kick can basically be taken anyway the defending team likes. It’s a simple rule. Those are the best kind, in my opinion.

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