14 major rule changes Scottish football fans need to know about for the new season

It is not long until the SPFL league season kicks off and referees again become the focus of ire and disgruntlement.

Monday, 29th July 2019, 1:29 pm

There will likely be more confusion this season with a range of rule changes. Click and scroll through the various changes and tweaks to get a better understanding of what has changed.

A free kick will be awarded if the ball goes into the goal after touching an attacking players hand/arm even if accidental.
If a player gains control/possession of the ball after it has touches their hand/arm and then scores, or creates a goal-scoring opportunity a free-kick will be awarded.

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A free-kick or penalty will be awarded if the ball touches a players hand/arm which has made their body unnaturally bigger.
If the ball touches a players hand/arm when it is above their shoulder (unless the player has deliberately played the ball which then touches their hand/arm) a penalty or free-kick will be given.
A free-kick or penalty WON'T be awarded if a player is falling and the ball touches their hand/arm when it is between their body and the ground to support the body, but not extended to make the body bigger.
No longer will the ball have to be played outside the box before it is deemed in play. Players from either side can touch the ball inside the box. Opposition players have to be outside the box when the kick is taken.
Players substituted off have to leave the field of play at the nearest point by the touchline/goal line unless the referee indicates otherwise. It is to stop timewasting.
There will no longer be drop balls. If play is stopped inside the penalty area the ball will be dropped to the goalkeeper. Outside the box it goes to a member of the team who last touched the ball at the point it was played.
Players will continue to be booked for over celebrating, including removal of the shirt. A yellow card will be shown even if the goal is disallowed.
They are required to have at least part of one foot on/in line with the goal line when the kick is taken and cannot stand behind the line. Not allowed to be touching the goalposts/crossbar/nets.
Teams are now able to take a quick free-kick even if the offence is to be penalised by a yellow or red card. The referee can show the card at the next stoppage in play.
Attackers are not allowed to be within 1m (1yd) of a defensive wall of three or more. An offence from the attacker will result in an indirect free kick.
Management staff can now be shown a yellow or red card if guilty of misconduct. If the offender cannot be identified, the senior coach who is in the technical area at the time will receive the card.
Teams who win the toss can choose to either take the kick-off or which goal to attack. Previously the only choice was which goal to attack.