United’s controversial equaliser exposed a major flaw in the rules but also gave them a platform to close the gap on City
A forward makes a run for a through-ball. The defender steps up. The ball is played and the forward is in an offside position. The forward chases the ball, following it, escorting it. Something in his head – perhaps Bruno Fernandes screaming – warns him that he might be offside and so he pulls away, allowing another forward (let’s call him “Bruno Fernandes”) to sweep the ball into the net. Is that forward offside?
He hasn’t touched the ball but can he be deemed to not have been interfering? Did his presence not prevent the initial defender charging back and trying to hook the ball away? It’s the sort of question that could have kept medieval theologians occupied for a lifetime. Duns Scotus and Thomas Aquinas would have written controversial tracts upon it, then those tracts would have been analysed and those analyses themselves analysed. Whole libraries would have been devoted to the theme. To what extent, if God is omniscient, can we have free will? If our thinking is flawed, can any revelation escape flaw? What is interfering?
Written by Jonathan Wilson at Old Trafford
This news first appeared on https://www.theguardian.com/football/blog/2023/jan/14/absurd-offside-law-cannot-disguise-shifting-of-sands-in-manchester under the title “Absurd offside law cannot disguise shifting of sands in Manchester | Jonathan Wilson”. Bolchha Nepal is not responsible or affiliated towards the opinion expressed in this news article.