What Is a Foul Throw in Football: The Definitive Guide


Many football goals in sports history are scored after a fast and correctly performed throw-in from the footballers.

However, every professional can make a mistake and execute a foul throw in football. 

So, enough warming up! Let’s see what is a foul throw in football and how to avoid it.

What is a Foul Throw in Football?

Football may seem like a sport with straightforward rules. Yet, it has some game procedures that are unclear to football fans.

One of them is the foul throw. Although it may seem bizarre, it happens even to professional football players.

But what is a foul throw in football? Before finding out, let’s explain what a throw-in is.

So, it is an act after the ball crosses the touchline. It means whether it goes out of the pitch while on the ground or in the air. It is awarded to the player’s opponent who touched the ball last. 

The throw-in must be conducted from where the ball left the field. The football game is restarted with the throw-in, and players can continue following their offence or defence strategy.

Now let’s see “What is a foul throw in football?”

It is an offence committed when the thrower breaks one of the rules for correctly distributing the ball back to the field of play. 

A foul throw happens when: 

  • The thrower doesn’t deliver the ball from the point where it left the football pitch
  • The thrower’s body doesn’t face the field of play
  • Throwing the ball without gripping it with both hands
  • Not throwing the ball with a manoeuvre that starts from behind of the player’s head and ends over it
  • One or both player’s legs weren’t on the touchline or out of the field while performing the throw-in
  • The player crosses the touchline before or while making the throw
  • The footballer doesn’t keep both feet on the ground

On the other hand, if the ball bounces after entering the field of play, it is NOT a foul throw. Instead, the same team retakes the throw-in. 

The ball is awarded to the opposite team when the referee blows a foul throw. They have to restart the game by performing a throw-in.  

You might be interested in: Why do footballers wear masks?

How to Avoid Committing a Foul Throw?

Nobody wants to make a mistake and be the player who loses a ball for their team by making a foul throw. 

So, if you don’t want to end up in that tricky situation, here is how to avoid the foul throw in football. 

First, make sure you face the football pitch while performing the throw-in.

Keep both hands on the ball until you release it. Throw the ball towards one of your teammates by bringing it behind your head and throwing it when it gets over you.

Note that all players must be 2 metres from the spot you are doing the throw-in. 

Additionally, as a thrower, you aren’t allowed to contact the ball after it is on the pitch until other players touch it. If you touch the ball first, the opposing team will be given an indirect free kick.

So, keep your feet grounded and ensure part of them is on the touchline or outside the field. You cannot cross the touchline before delivering the ball or during the throw-in.

Have all of these things in mind next time you play, so you do not make a foul throw in football. 

Can a Goal Be Scored Directly From a Throw-In?

Throwing the ball directly at the goalkeepers and scoring a goal from a throw-in is NOT allowed in football. 

However, footballers are allowed to score a goal with an assist throw-in. 

A corner kick will be awarded when the thrower scores a goal directly in his team goal from a throw-in. On the other hand, if the ball enters the opponent’s goal from a throw-in, the judge will blow a goal kick. 

The goal will be disallowed in both cases and won’t be counted in the results. 

Wrap Up

Knowing the rules combined with practice is the best way to avoid a foul throw in football. 

Remember to face the pitch and keep both hands on the ball. So, make the throw by starting behind your head and releasing the ball when it is over your head.

Since you know the answer to what is a foul throw in football, you will not need to worry while playing your next match or watching a football game.

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