Definition of Offside Trap

What is the meaning of the offside trap in the game of football / soccer?

The offside trap is a football tactic used by defensive players of one team to try and catch the offensive players of the opposing team in an offside position.

The tactic is executed in such a way that the defending players move up the field in sync just before an opponent passes the ball to their forward, leaving him/her exposed and in the offside.

You can read our full definition, rule and meaning of offside in soccer by clicking here.

The referee is signaling for offside - Illustration - Dictionary entry - Offside Trap - Sports King.

The offside trap is tricky to execute and more than one thing has to work out in order for it to be done correctly. First and foremost, all defending players must move simultaneously and the timing has to be perfect. If even one defender moves late, after the pass has already been made, this will greatly endanger the goal as the attacking player will be left alone with the ball in front of the goalie, providing he/she receives the pass correctly. Also, the linesman has to see the offside and raise the flag in order for the main referee to make the call.

The offside trap is a tactic best used when playing against teams that tend to play a long ball passing game. On the contrary, it is quite risky to play it against teams that utilize quick and short passes.

Communication among defenders is key when attempting the offside trap.