Arsene Wenger presents radical offside idea to FIFA president Gianni Infantino


Arsene Wenger presents his radical offside rule change – which would see a player deemed onside if ANY part of them that can score is in line with the second-last defender – to Gianni Infantino and FIFA’s law-making body

  • Arsene Wenger’s idea to change the offside rule has been presented to FIFA
  • The radical idea change would see a player deemed onside if any part of them that can score a goal is in line with the second-last defender
  • FIFA president Gianni Infantino is open to new ways on interpreting the rule

Arsene Wenger‘s radical idea to change the offside rule – which would see a player deemed onside if any part of them that can score a goal is in line with the second-last defender – has been presented to FIFA president Gianni Infantino.

The former Arsenal manager is now FIFA’s chief of global football development and is leading the charge to change how the beautiful game is played.

Infantino said Wenger had given a presentation on a proposed change to the offside law – with the controversial idea being considered by FIFA’s top men.

Arsene Wenger's idea to change offsides has been presented to FIFA chief Gianni Infantin

Arsene Wenger’s idea to change offsides has been presented to FIFA chief Gianni Infantin

Infantino said the offside law had only been changed twice since it was introduced in 1863.

However, the speed of the game and availability of VAR at the highest levels meant that the offside rule could be reviewed again to favour attacking teams.

‘Our aim is always to see if we can make football more attractive,’ Infantino said.

‘Arsene Wenger presented to us today what this could look like. It could be if the attacking player is ahead of the second last defender but still one part of the body is in line, giving the attacking player a bit more room. It is in favour of the attacking player.’

Infantino said that on average there were four offsides per game in the Premier League and this change would reduce the number to two.

Wenger wants to change the offside rule so that a player would be deemed onside if any part of them that can score a goal is in line with the second-last defender

Wenger wants to change the offside rule so that a player would be deemed onside if any part of them that can score a goal is in line with the second-last defender

‘The new rule would mean two are not given because they are marginal,’ he added.

No timescale was given on the trials or changes. ‘Such a change will have to be tested,’ said Infantino.

‘If positive we might go ahead, but if negative we might step back. But we are always open to new ideas if we can make football more attacking.’

David Ellery, former Premier League referee and technical director of IFAB said: ‘The test will be if any part of your body apart from the hand or arms is level with or behind the second last defender you would not be offside.’ 

While offsides have been scrutinised as of late, the way VAR is being implemented in England has also come under attack.

Infantino confirmed that Wenger presented his ideas to FIFA and football's law-makers

Infantino confirmed that Wenger presented his ideas to FIFA and football’s law-makers

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