Rules for soccer scoring seem simple -- when the ball crosses the goal line, a point is scored. In some situation, though, getting the ball into the goal does not count as a point. The referee is responsible for making the call as to whether a goal is scored, and he records the goals in a notebook. Most soccer organizations follow scoring rules set by FIFA, the international governing body of soccer.
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Crossing the Line
The entire ball must pass over the goal line and between the goal posts for a point to be scored. The ball also must pass under the crossbar. The winning team is the one that scores the highest number of goals. The match is a draw if an equal number of goals is scored or if no goals are scored.
Any part of the body can be used to score a goal except for the arm or hand. Usually, players use the head or a foot.
No Point Rules
Points are not awarded if a player who kicks the ball in is in an offside position, meaning she is closer to her opponent’s goal line than both the second-last opponent and the ball. A point is not awarded if a throw-in passes the goal line, either. On an indirect free kick, a goal is only counted if the ball touches another player before crossing the goal line. A goal is awarded, though, when a direct free kick is shot directly into an opponent’s goal.
Goals do not count if there is interference from an “outside agent.” This can include an animal, a spectator or an object. However, the referee is considered a neutral object, so a goal is awarded if it bounces off the ref and goes in.