In football (at least in Europe), the second half of a football match almost always gets a longer additional time (seems to be 3 minutes on average) than the first half (seems to be 1 minute on average).

Why is that?

1 Answer 1


Generally teams make more substitutions in the second half, which means more stoppage time. Very rarely is a substitution made in the first half, while most teams use all 3 subs in the second half.

  • 3
    Furthermore, referees do what they can to avoid handing out cards in the first half to keep play as fair for both teams as possible (i.e. players with cards have to be more conservative). Simple fouls rarely slow up play as teams just take the free kicks quickly (unless of course it's in a dangerous position where a kick is optimal). Since cards tend to get distributed more heavily in the second half, this leads to Player(s) v. Referee confrontations, as well as Team v. Team confrontations -- all of which causes delays in play, and since the clock never stops, this equates to stoppage time.
    – Nick
    Sep 18, 2013 at 19:55

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