Just received a memorandum from US Soccer regarding situations in the implementation of the send off for denial of an obvious goal scoring opportunity. There were two recent matches, one in MLS and the other from the UEFA Cup final that highlighted the situation.
For novices to soccer, if a player has an obvious goal scoring opportunity (typically that means one-on-one with the goal keeper or a last defender in an area where a goal can be scored) and is fouled in such a way to deny the opportunity, the defender who commits the foul is to be sent off and shown the red card.
Now, what happens when the referee gives advantage (choosing not to immediately call the foul if that would give advantage to the defending team)?
A. If the attacker, or a teammate of the attacker, is able to maintain momentum and score, then the referee was correct in applying advantage and should allow the goal and caution the defender for unsporting behaviour and show the yellow card.
B. If the referee gives advantage and the attacker, or teammate of the attacker, is not able to maintain the attack and get a shot off, then the referee should blow the whistle, call the foul and send off the defender and show the red card.
The referee need not call out "play on" and raise his arms with the advantage signal to allow advantage. Sometimes play happens so quickly that there is not enough time for the signal. Regardless, if the referee has decided to give advantage, that is enough.