The International Football Association Board (IFAB) has made an announcement that could lead to major changes in world soccer. In its Annual Business Meeting (ABM) in London, the body that determines the Laws of the Game has approved trials for new rules.

For instance, one of the proposed trials is that only the team captain may approach the referee. That would help to prevent multiple players from going all over the refs whenever they want to complain about certain decisions.

But it’s safe to say the biggest news announced by the IFAB is the test of temporary dismissals (sin bins) in professional leagues. According to The Telegraph, this measure – already tested at grassroots soccer – could have its first trial as early as next season in competitions such as the Premier League.

The “orange card” could be implemented in professional soccer

The application of sin bins would be the so-called “orange card,” by which sanctioned players temporarily leave the field. It would equate a yellow card in rugby, by which a player stays on the sidelines for 10 minutes. The idea is to penalize protests and specific tactical fouls with a greater punishment than a booking, but without going as far as showing a red card.

Both letting only the team captain talk to the referee and implementing sin bins are rugby-style measures that would help to encourage respect towards the officials. But the IFAB has even more ideas to achieve that.

More measures involving VAR trials

Apart from discussing a stricter implementation of the Laws of the Game against players and coaches who show disrespectful conduct, the board also addressed the idea of having referees wear body cameras. That measure has already been tested at grassroots level as well.

SURVEY Would you like to see the orange card in soccer?

Would you like to see the orange card in soccer?


Additionally, more ideas to improve the use of VAR were brought to the table. The IFAB aims to continue developing semi-automated offside tools to reduce the length of the decision-making process in those situations.

Besides, it also agrees that the trial of having referees communicate their final decision after VAR review has been successful and could be implemented as a rule from now on. Either way, the IFAB agreed that there’s still room for improvement regarding the implementation of VAR.