Penalty shootout (football)

From Academic Kids

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Ricardo Pereira scores the winning penalty in the quarterfinals of Euro 2004

A penalty shootout (officially referred to as kicks from the penalty mark) is sometimes used to decide which team progresses to the next stage of a tournament following a tied result in a game of association football (soccer). Kicks during a shootout should not be confused with penalty kicks, which are similar, but are part of normal play during a match and governed by different rules.

Shootouts are almost always used only in elimination (as opposed to league) games, to decide who will progress to the next stage of a tournament. Usually extra time has been played first. However, the Copa Libertadores has a penalty shootout immediately after the end of a two-legged tie that is level on aggregate, with no extra time played; since 2005, this only takes place if there is no winner on away goals. During the 1980s, Yugoslavia's football league experimented with kicks from the penalty mark immediately after tied league matches, and only the winner was awarded a point; this was soon abandoned.

Kicks from the penalty mark are not part of the penalty kick law. However, they follow essentially the same procedure as penalty kicks and are popularly referred to as "penalties". Unlike penalty kicks, players other than the kicker and the defending goalkeeper must remain in the center circle (other than the kicking team's goalkeeper, who stands on the junction of goal line and penalty area near to the assistant referee).

Goals scored during the shootout are not included in the final score. Furthermore, strictly speaking kicks from the penalty mark do not result in a game winner; the game remains a tie and the result of the kicks is merely used to select a winner to progress to the next stage of the tournament. However, in popular usage a team is often said to have "won on penalties", and such games often have their result rendered as (for example): "Team A 2–2 Team B (aet), Team A won 5–4 on penalties".



The following is a summary of the procedure for kicks from the penalty mark:

  • All players other than the kicker and the goalkeepers must remain in the field's centre circle (see above).
  • Each kick is taken in the general manner of a penalty kick. Each kick is taken from the penalty mark, with the goal only defended by the opposing goalkeeper. The goalkeeper must remain between the goal-posts on his goal-line until the ball has been kicked.
  • Each kicker can only kick the ball once. If the ball is blocked by the goalkeeper, the kicker cannot score from the rebound (unlike a normal penalty kick).
  • Teams take alternating turns to kick from the penalty mark in attempt to score a goal, until each has taken five kicks. However, if one side has scored more goals than the other could possibly reach with all of their remaining kicks, the shootout ends regardless of the number of kicks remaining.
  • If at the end of these five rounds of kicks the teams have scored an equal number of goals, sudden death rounds of one kick each are used until one side scores and the other does not.
  • No player is allowed to take a second kick from the penalty mark until all other players on his team have taken a kick from the penalty mark (including the goalkeepers). However, if at the beginning of kicks from the penalty mark one side has more players on the field than the other, then the side with more players shall select an appropriate number of players to not take part. For example, if Team A has 11 players but Team B only has 10, then Team A will choose one player not to take part. Note that it is not allowed to de-select a goalkeeper from having to take part in kicking from the penalty mark: players de-selected cannot play any part in the procedure.


The first ever penalty shootout took place in 1970 between Hull City and Manchester United during the Watney Cup, and was won by Manchester United. The first footballer to take a kick was George Best, and the first to miss was Denis Law.

The finals of two major FIFA competitions have gone to penalty shootouts. Both took place in the same stadium, the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, California, USA.

  • In the (men's) 1994 World Cup, Brazil and Italy ended extra time in a scoreless tie. Brazil went on to win the shootout 3–2.
  • Like the 1994 men's final, the 1999 Women's World Cup final between the USA and China was scoreless after extra time. The US team, who were hosting the tournament, won the shootout 5–4, with the winning shot by Brandi Chastain punctuated by her famous shirt-stripping moment.

Goalkeepers have been known to win shootouts by their kicking; for example, in a Euro 2004 quarterfinal, Portugal goalkeeper Ricardo Pereira saved a kick from England's Darius Vassell, and immediately followed the save by scoring the winning shot. Another example is Vlez Sarsfield's Jos Chilavert in the Copa Libertadores 1994 finals.

See also

  • Penalty shootout (unqualified)—information on penalty shootouts in other sports.



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