New York Red Bulls trick-play goal should not have counted, says referee organization

The New York Red Bulls dug deep into their bag of tricks on Wednesday, and it paid off handsomely.

Red Bulls center back Ronald Zubar temporarily pulled his club level at 2-2 in the 49th minute of their road game against the Chicago Fire on Wednesday night thanks to a well drawn-up set piece. Having won a corner kick on the right, Lloyd Sam stepped up to whip in a cross and stepped on the ball a few times before nonchalantly making way for Sacha Kljestan to take.

Or so we thought.

Kljestan stood over the ball for a few seconds, talked to the linesman, and darted forward on the dribble before feeding Zubar with a low cross. The ball was deemed to have been in play because of Sam's touches, which allowed Kljestan to run with it against a Fire defense that was caught unaware of the situation.

While the goal was an impressive piece of trickery from Jesse Marsch's side, it should not have counted. Citing Law 17 of the FIFA Laws of the Game which addresses corner kicks (page 53), a PRO official informed on Wednesday night that the act of Sam touching the ball more than once is an offense punishable with an indirect free kick for the Fire. The FIFA Law states that "if the kicker touches the ball again before it has touched another player, an indirect free kick is awarded to the opposing team."