Ivan Perisic: Tottenham signing was once caught out by unusual football law

  • Rob Swan
Tottenham signing Ivan Perisic was once caught out by a football law he didn’t know existed

Ivan Perisic was unveiled as a new Tottenham player this week after signing a two-year deal with the Premier League side.

The experienced Croatia international, 33, joins Spurs after a seven-year stint with Inter Milan.

Perisic has also played in France, Belgium and Germany and didn’t think twice when the opportunity to reunite with Antonio Conte in north London arose.

“It is a privilege to work with a coach like this. I am really happy to see him again,” he said after signing, per BBC Sport. “I am really excited to start with the Spurs family.”

Perisic once fell foul of unusual football law

During his time with Inter, Perisic fell foul of a football law that still catches professional players out from time to time.

In 2017, Perisic was shown a yellow card for a bizarre incident during a Serie A clash between Inter and AS Roma.

Stood on his own byline, Perisic did a couple of kick-ups before heading the ball to his goalkeeper, Samir Handanovic.

Perisic bizarre yellow card

The Croatian winger, along with his baffled teammates, was left confused and shocked by the referee’s decision to show him a yellow card.

Watch the footage here:

It seems he had no idea that football’s rules stipulate that players aren’t allowed to use ‘trickery’ in order to get around Law 12.

“No trickery may be used to get around the terms of the amendment to Law 12,” the rules stated at the time.

“A player may pass the ball to his own goalkeeper using his head, chest, knee, etc.; however, if, in the opinion of the referee, the player uses a deliberate trick — such as flicking the ball to his head with his foot and heading it to the goalkeeper or kneeling and deliberately pushing the ball to the goalkeeper with his head or knee — he must be cautioned for ungentlemanly conduct.

“It makes no difference whether or not the goalkeeper touches the ball with his hands; the offence is committed by the player who is seeking to circumvent both the Spirit and Letter of the Law.”

IFAB’s website states that an indirect free-kick should be awarded to the opposing team.

Point 12.2 says that an indirect free-kick is awarded if a player: “Initiates a deliberate trick for the ball to be passed (including from a free kick or goal kick) to the goalkeeper with the head, chest, knee etc. to circumvent the Law, whether or not the goalkeeper touches the ball with the hands; the goalkeeper is penalised if responsible for initiating the deliberate trick.”

Perisic bizarre yellow card

Marco Verratti was also punished for the same thing

If you never know about this rule, you’re certainly not alone.

Just one month earlier, Paris Saint-Germain midfielder Marco Verratti was caught out in similar circumstances during a Ligue 1 fixture against Nantes.

Verratti strange booking

Verratti crouched down to head the ball back to his goalkeeper but was shown a yellow card for a cynical attempt to bypass the back-pass law.

Watch it here:

When it comes to football’s strangest rules, this one is surely right up there.

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