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Should most free kicks be defended without a wall?

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    It seems far too often the goalkeeper lets in a free kick because he has to properly react only when the ball is past the wall. Without a wall, he can watch the ball right from the kick.

    Perhaps a wall was a good idea at first, but now the football world has more experience of placing free kicks and getting it past a wall, especially with certain players, surely it's better to let the keeper see it all the way. The vast, vast majority of goals are scored in the penalty area, the vast, vast majority of distant shots balloon over the goal or are hit right at the keeper. The vast majority of long-range shots on target are saved. I also think the vast majority of long-range goals happen thanks to the power of surprise and unexpected flair, rather than preparation and knowing where the shot is coming from and when.

    While a few free kicks hit the wall, would more be saved if there was no wall?

    Especially for the ones even further away than the edge of the penalty area, that still for some reason has a wall setup. If the guy's going to shoot from all the way over there, the keeper would have no trouble stopping it unless it's beyond his reach somehow.
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    Free kicks would be more accurate, on target more often and hit with more power and pace if there was no wall.

    The wall is obviously doing its job if the ball hits them and likewise if the free kick taker is hitting the ball off target too.
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    Maybe for free kicks that are 30+ yards away but otherwise no. Without a wall you basically have a free shot with nothing stopping you from shooting where you want making it a lot easier to score than if there was a wall. Also teams will think of clever free kicks that, for example, do a 10 yard pass to the edge of the box and then have a free shot - again making it easier to shoot. Also teams are not going to have more attackers than the other team has defenders (except for maybe when it's the 90th min etc. but not often) so there is no need for the extra defenders in the box.
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    If there were no walls then people would just step up and blast it and the keeper would be screwed.

    In simple terms
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    (Original post by SneakyDoug)
    teams will think of clever free kicks that, for example, do a 10 yard pass to the edge of the box and then have a free shot - again making it easier to shoot.
    Which they can already do.

    (Original post by Straight up G)
    If there were no walls then people would just step up and blast it and the keeper would be screwed.

    In simple terms
    They do that now, except the keeper sometimes can't see and it has curve to it because it has to get past the wall, making it harder to get to too.
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    (Original post by TrulyEpicLawls)
    They do that now, except the keeper sometimes can't see and it has curve to it because it has to get past the wall, making it harder to get to too.
    No, because with no wall, they'd be able to aim at both sides. The only reason why keepers usually save 'blasts' is because they've got the positional advantage.

    Where would you prefer all the defenders stood, on the goal line?
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    I don't think removing the wall has the same amount of benefits for the keeper as the person taking the free kick. There's really no point in removing the wall, if anything it'll become unfair.
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    I think you're onto something. Guys like Ronaldo are going to shoot, but they're so ingenious at bypassing the wall that it becomes irrelevant. I've seen Ronaldo score plenty of free kicks and they've generally been BECAUSE of the wall. I remember when he scored because he shot under the wall, knowing the wall would jump and the keeper wouldn't see it.

    I do remember once a team didn't use a wall for a free kick, the commentator was all surprised "they're not going to use a wall here, they're giving him a free shot!" He shot, keeper saved easily. If there was a wall, I do think the same shot would've gone in.
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    (Original post by nonotrly)
    I think you're onto something. Guys like Ronaldo are going to shoot, but they're so ingenious at bypassing the wall that it becomes irrelevant. I've seen Ronaldo score plenty of free kicks and they've generally been BECAUSE of the wall. I remember when he scored because he shot under the wall, knowing the wall would jump and the keeper wouldn't see it.

    I do remember once a team didn't use a wall for a free kick, the commentator was all surprised "they're not going to use a wall here, they're giving him a free shot!" He shot, keeper saved easily. If there was a wall, I do think the same shot would've gone in.
    The "kick under the wall" trick rarely works and usually makes the freekick taker look like an idiot.

    I think people that think the wall is irrelevant are seriously underestimating how difficult it is to read where a shot is going and get to that side of the goal to save it before it reaches the goal. Especially since there's no wall so the free kick taker can shoot with more power without having to worry about curving it around or dipping it over a wall.
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    I'd still have a wall, but one consisting of 2/3 men rather than the more prevalent 4/5. Then put two men on either side of the goal, therefore narrowing the goal for the taker.
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    A freekick that beats a wall and the keeper is generally a good freekick - certainly much harder than just beating a keeper. Plus what's there to stop someone from just passing the ball through the gap you've left without a wall?
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    Having no wall would just add ~5 players into the penalty area in random positions which would further impede the keepers view of the ball.


    This was posted from The Student Room's iPhone/iPad App
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    (Original post by Mess.)
    Having no wall would just add ~5 players into the penalty area in random positions which would further impede the keepers view of the ball.
    5 players inbetween the ball and the keeper now being at different positions in the areas generally not between the keeper and the ball further impede's a keeper's view of the ball.

    I see.
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    (Original post by TrulyEpicLawls)
    5 players inbetween the ball and the keeper now being at different positions in the areas generally not between the keeper and the ball further impede's a keeper's view of the ball.

    I see.
    Yes, because if there is a wall then the keeper sets himself to the side of the wall (as he does now) and has a far better idea of where the player is going to hit it as well as 5 less players infringing upon his potential line of sight. If there is no wall then there is no single viewpoint as there are five extra people in random positions whilst the keeper has to stand far more centrally, allowing the player two real decisions of where to hit it.

    Adding more players into the random central area creates less chance of a direct line of sight, a simple diagram will show that :dontknow:
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    (Original post by Mess.)
    Yes, because if there is a wall then the keeper sets himself to the side of the wall (as he does now) and has a far better idea of where the player is going to hit it as well as 5 less players infringing upon his potential line of sight. If there is no wall then there is no single viewpoint as there are five extra people in random positions whilst the keeper has to stand far more centrally, allowing the player two real decisions of where to hit it.

    Adding more players into the random central area creates less chance of a direct line of sight, a simple diagram will show that :dontknow:
    Ah so now the keeper sees it all the way and the taker only hits it at one side. Please lavish me with more of your modest and intellectual sayings.

    A wall can be as little as one or two defenders. So if there is a player inbetween the ball and the keeper, it is an acting wall. A simple brain will show that LOLZ.

    Please draw me a diagram, superior mod being. I are 2 stupid.
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    (Original post by TrulyEpicLawls)
    Ah so now the keeper sees it all the way and the taker only hits it at one side. Please lavish me with more of your modest and intellectual sayings.

    A wall can be as little as one or two defenders. So if there is a player inbetween the ball and the keeper, it is an acting wall. A simple brain will show that LOLZ.

    Please draw me a diagram, superior mod being. I are 2 stupid.
    I am not getting involved in a childish argument, my point has been made. If you wish to refute it then by all means but try to act like an adult please.

    At the moment the majority of free kicks within the normal scoring range have the wall to one side and the keeper in the free area so he can see the ball and the wall does not impede the keepers line of sight. This is impeded by the random movements of the non-static footballers between the keepers line of sight and the stationary ball. The keeper is the covering one side so the majority of the time players will try and strike it behind the wall at the free area, essentially the players choice is narrowed and the keeper can better anticipate where he expects the ball to go.
    No wall would mean the keeper would have to stand centrally/closer to where the ball is placed. His line of sight then has 3-5 more players randomly moving about in the central area, therefore he can see less of the ball (potentially) and the player taking the free kick has more options and the keeper can not anticipate the decision as well.

    And yes a wall can be as little as one player but I thought we were talking about realistic things here, as well as free kicks that where in a realistically dangerous position (not just the Roberto Carlos/Ronaldo hit and hopes that very rarely go in but stick in the mind when they do).

    I really don't understand your completely over the top reaction to someone answering you.
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    (Original post by Mess.)
    I am not getting involved in a childish argument
    Ok, don't be a needlessly condescending dick then. Toodles.
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    Not sure about without a wall. But why do teams not keep a man on each post for free-kicks nowadays. I know its for offsides. But as a former goalkeeper, I always liked a man on each post. If its on target its normally in the corners. So could be easily blocked on the line?
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    (Original post by TrulyEpicLawls)
    Ok, don't be a needlessly condescending dick then. Toodles.
    I wasn't, you made a point attempting to belittle what I had said and I refuted said point and then backed up what I said. If what I said was incorrect then I would have expected you to tell me what was wrong about I said as it was only an opinion I was giving as to why I think walls are an important part of defending free kicks.
    (Original post by Vintage)
    Not sure about without a wall. But why do teams not keep a man on each post for free-kicks nowadays. I know its for offsides. But as a former goalkeeper, I always liked a man on each post. If its on target its normally in the corners. So could be easily blocked on the line?
    Must admit, I have often thought that as well, especially in the area behind the wall as its furthest from the keeper.
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    (Original post by Mess.)
    you made a point attempting to belittle what I had said
    Good lord man, what's wrong with you?

    (Original post by Vintage)
    Not sure about without a wall. But why do teams not keep a man on each post for free-kicks nowadays. I know its for offsides. But as a former goalkeeper, I always liked a man on each post. If its on target its normally in the corners. So could be easily blocked on the line?
    I had figured the goalkeeper doesn't want players in the way. I've seen a couple of times a free kick (or corner) go in while a goalkeeper doesn't go into a dive because a defender's on the post in the way (who didn't stop the ball either).

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