Premier League introduce new ‘eye contact’ rule to stop time-wasting.
To reduce the amount of time wasted during games, the Premier League has implemented new restrictions.
A brand-new multi-ball system will debut when Crystal Palace hosts Arsenal on August 5 in the resumption of the English premier division.
Ten match balls will be used in total during games, according to Mike Keegan of the Daily Mail.
There will be one in play at the start of the game, one in the fourth official’s custody, and eight more scattered around the edge of the pitch—two behind each goal and two more close to the touchline.
Cones will hold the balls, and care must be taken with the cones behind the goal to prevent any interference with the Hawk-Eye goal system.
Additionally, the function of ball assistants—typically club academy players—has expanded.
At least eight must be placed strategically around the field with the instruction to return the ball for both teams at the same speed.
Ball helpers have a propensity to keep the ball in their possession for a little bit longer to extend the time limit.
It’s also become mandatory for ball helpers to make eye contact with the person they are returning the ball to.
During Bournemouth’s home match versus Spurs at the Vitality Stadium in 2018, the ball boy went viral.
When the Cherries had a 1-0 lead thanks to Junior Stanislas after 20 minutes of play, Sky Sports cameras captured a confrontation between him and Spurs center-back Jan Vertonghen.
The child, who has an identical twin who is also a ball boy, initially flatly refused to give the Belgian the ball back and later hurled it at his legs, earning him a warning from the linesman for his misbehavior.
In addition, fourth official Mike Jones and referee Mike Dean were spotted chatting, and the ball boy soon received a scolding from a nearby steward.