Watching Bundesliga or Premier League from time to time I will see a player inbounding the ball, and running along the sideline. There does not seem to be a restriction, but surely there must be.

What restricts the movement of a player inbounding the ball in football (soccer)?

For more information: (and apologies, YouTube does not seem to have very many videos of player tossing the ball in). What I am talking about is when the ball is played out of bounds along the sidelines. The ensuing play has one player take the ball and toss it over his head into play. It seems this player can run boundlessly along the sideline before tossing it in.

  • Sounds like you're talking about a throw-in. They can go until the ref says stop. 5 meters +/- are usually acceptable.
    – dly
    Oct 26, 2022 at 13:38

1 Answer 1


Law 15 - The Throw-in states:

At the moment of delivering the ball, the thrower must: [...] throw the ball with both hands from behind and over the head from the point where it left the field of play

so in theory it should be at the exact point the ball left the pitch. In practice, players will be given a certain (non-defined) amount of leeway, particularly if doing so enables the game to be restarted more quickly and does not result in their team gaining an advantage.

  • 1
    And referrees allow this to be widely abused almost evrywhere. Watch any football match in any of the English leagues including the Premiership and players steal huge amounts of ground with impunity, in this way. And it has been widely evident at this world cup. Only rarely do you see a referee or a linesman pull a player back and make him take the throw from where the ball went out of play.
    – WS2
    Dec 4, 2022 at 8:55

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.