A goal kick is the way that play is restarted when the ball, having last touched a player of the attacking team, passes over the goal line and a goal is not scored according to Law 10. The kick is taken by the defending team at any point within their own goal area.
A goal kick is awarded:
A goal may be scored directly from a goal kick but only against the opposing team. This means that if the ball is kicked high into the hurricane force wind which blows it back into the kicker's goal before it gets beyond the penalty area, it is rekicked. If by any chance the ball does leave the penalty before being blown back into the goal, the correct restart will be a corner kick, as you may not score on your own goal directly from a goal kick.
It's true that the laws used to require that the kick be taken on the side of goal on which the ball went out. However, this changed several years ago and players can place the ball anywhere inside the goal area (i.e. the "little box".. Typically, kickers will place the ball in either front corner of the box as this gets the ball a) as far forward and b) as far away from the center of the goal as possible.
As noted above, the ball is therefore never in play and the kick must be retaken.
Good questions. First of all, let's look at the defender. Defenders can be anywhere on the field at the time of the kick so they can certainly rush into the penalty area to play the ball if they want—as long as they don't actually touch it until it leaves the area. If they DO touch it, the kick is retaken. Looking at the attackers, they are in violation of the law as soon as they enter the area, which earns an immediate retake whether they touch the ball or not. Note that if either the attackers or defenders continually play the ball in the area, or if the attackers continually enter the area, the referee might apply sanctions for wasting time, misconduct, or impeding the restart of play.
As we learned in Law 1, the lines are part of the area that the define which makes the penalty area line a part of the area itself. This means that a ball sitting on the line is actually still sitting in the area, which calls for the kick to be retaken.
Different questions, same answer. As long as the ball has not left the area, it is simply not in play and players can pick it up, stuff it under their shirt, balance it on their head, whatever, with the only penalty being a retake , subject to the repeated infringement/wasting time/misconduct deal in 4 above.
First, let's consider the case where the keeper is the kicker. Once the ball has first passed completely out of the penalty area and has then been played back in by another player of either team, the keeper may safely pick it up, subject of course to the usual restriction that he may not handle a ball which has been intentionally kicked to him by a teammate. If a player other than the keeper takes the goalkick, the keeper may safely handle the ball as soon it has first passed out of the penalty area and then re-entered it (subject of course to the same restriction). For example, if a player other than the keeper takes a goal kick which is then blown back into the penalty area by the wind, or which hits the referee and bounces back in, the keeper may safely pick up the ball.
In general, as far as you want. However, most tournaments that play 6 v . 6, as well as most indoor venues, require that the ball either touch the ground or another player before crossing the midfield line.
As you know, the actions of the linesman are subject to the decision of the referee. Regardless of who was technically "correct", a corner kick it'll be.
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