KEIR RADNEDGE REPORTS: The vexed issue of handball is high on the agenda for the annual meeting of the lawmaking International Football Associatiion Board on March 5.

Controversy has surrounded the parameters for handball, particularly since permission was withdrawn for referees to assess intention.

A review was proposed by the annual business meeeting after which IFAB said: “Given that the interpretation of the plays in which a hand occurs has not always been consistent, the IFAB members agreed that further clarifications should be considered at the annual meeting.

“It was agreed that when a player touches the ball with his hand/arm it is not always an offence. In terms of ‘abnormally larger’, the referees must judge the position of the hand/arm in relation to the movement of the player in that phase of the game.”

Other items to be discussed in the online meeting, being chaired by the Football Association of Wales, include initial analysis of the launch of the concussion substitutes trial as well as issues arising out of the ongoing worldwide use of video assistance refereeing.

The agenda:

I. Welcome

II. Chairman’s remarks

III. Roll call

IV. Approval of the agenda

V. Approval of the minutes of the last meeting

VI. Items for discussion and decision:

1. Laws of the Game 2020/21

Summary of Law changes introduced on 1 June 2020
2. Laws of the Game 2021/22
Proposed changes and clarifications
a. Law 12 – Fouls and Misconduct: handball
b. Other changes and clarifications
3. Discussion topics
a. Concussion substitutes (trial)
b. Increased number of substitutes (temporary amendment)
c. Offside
4. Video Assistant Referees (VARs)
5. Financial and business matters
a. Ratification of approved 2020 budget
b. Audit Report 2020 and detailed financial statements
c. Budget 2021
6. Composition of Advisory Panels (TAP + FAP)
VII. Any other business

VIII. Next meetings