As the Euros get ready to start, many people haven’t realised that there have been a host of rule changes.

Here are 11 of the 57 changes so you know what’s going on at least some of the time (although some are quite ridiculous).


While a player will be allowed to hesitate in his run-up, should he stop totally the opposing team will be awarded an indirect free-kick and the penalty taker will be booked.

Triple punishment no more

If a ‘denying a clear goal scoring opportunity’ results in a penalty, the offending player will receive a yellow card instead of a red if there was ‘clear intention’ to play the ball.

Scoring an OG from a corner

If the attacking team somehow manages to score an own goal while taking a corner up the other end, the goal will not stand and a corner will be given. Confused? You should be, because how often has this ever happened?

Basically, if Jack Wilshere is taking a corner for England against Wales but decides to pass it back to Joe Hart and it ends up in the back of the next, Wales will get a corner rather than a goal.


The ball no longer needs to be kicked forward from the kick-off.

The Nicklas Bendtner rule

Underpants must now be the same colour as shorts. Socks and tape must be in the colour of the shirt.

Lost boot

If a player loses a boot he is now no longer allowed to play on until he’s got it back on his foot again. If he does play the ball, his opponents will receive an indirect free kick.

Red cards before kick off

Referees can now issue red cards before the match has even started and the punished team are not allowed to field a replacement. Personally, I’d be happy with reds during games being given out properly first.

Treatment breaks

Players are no longer required to leave the pitch if they have undergone treatment which lasts under 20 seconds. This seems stupid because the rule was put in place to stop time-wasting by faking an injury so you would expect those who are actually injured to take longer than 20 seconds to recover – yet they will be the ones still forced to leave the pitch which the offending player remains on it.

Drinks breaks

Drinks breaks are allowed when temperatures reach their highest levels. The time will be added on to injury time.

The wall

Players from the opposing team are no longer allowed to stand in front of the keeper in an offside position at a freekick, even though they run back onside before the kick is taken.


Instead of throwing his arms forward to wave ‘play on’ when issuing an advantage, a referee now has to raise his arm upright, as if he’s signalling an indirect free-kick. Not entirely sure why this original gesture needed to be changed to one that already signals something else but, you know, FIFA.

We’re working on getting all 57 changes to include those on the site as well, check back in the morning.