Take Five: Football custodians ratifies five-substitute rule for the 2022/23 season
- IFAB approves five-substitute rule for 2022/23 season
- The proposal was first introduced in May 2020
- It was made a permanent fixture in the Laws of the Game 2022/23, on the recommendation of IFAB's advisory panel
The International Football Association Board (IFAB)- responsible for governing and developing the rules of football- has ratified a slew of recommendations made by its Football and Technical Advisory Panels (FAP-TAP) at its 136th Annual General Meeting (AGM) held in Doha, Qatar.
Also Read: Five-substitute rule extended to 2022 World Cup: IFAB
The most significant change proposed to the Laws of the Game 2022/23 is to make the five substitute rule a permanent fixture in top-level competitions, including the World Cup later in the year.
The rule was temporarily introduced in May 2020 to ensure player welfare amidst a global pandemic. With the rescheduling of the football calendar necessitated by a pandemic-imposed halt, the move was a means to ensure player fatigue remained at manageable levels as governing bodies across the world scrambled to make up for the lost time. The provision received multiple extensions since its introduction, finally getting a degree of fixity after today's AGM.
In addition, IFAB also approved proposals for increasing the maximum number of substitutes listed to 15 from the existing 12. However, tournament organizers have the discretion to opt otherwise. IFAB also agreed to continue its global trials with an additional concussion substitute till August 2023. With trials continuing across 140 competitions, the rule-making body posited that it needed a broader data set to arrive at a conclusive decision.
The AGM chaired by FIFA President Gianni Infantino also discussed proposals on referee safety, potential alternatives to the offside law and technologies to better assist referees. In attendance were members from the Football Associations of England, Ireland, Scotland, and Wales, alongside FIFA representatives and IFAB administrators. The IFAB- widely considered the guardian of the sport- was established in 1886 to ensure uniform laws across the United Kingdom. Its first meeting was held in London's Holborn Viaduct on June 2nd, bringing together representatives from the four governing bodies of the home nations: England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales. Even after its establishment in 1904, FIFA has continued to acknowledge IFAB as the custodians of the sport's rules.