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What Is Added Time in Football?

Stoppage time is added to a match after regulation time.

Stoppage time is added to a match after regulation time.

What Is Stoppage Time?

There are actually many names for added time. It could also be called injury or stoppage time. That's because added time is calculated based on the amount of time lost during a match. For example, say two minutes were lost in the first half due to multiple stoppages. This means there will be two minutes added at the end of the half.

The word stoppage is vague; it could mean so many different things. It could refer to injuries, substitutions, set-pieces and Video Assistant Referee (VAR) checks.

Injuries are a common source of added time.

Injuries are a common source of added time.

How Do Officials Determine Added Time?

Stoppages determine how much time will be added to the end of the half. Stoppage time will be added when:

  • Substitutions happen.
  • Potentially injured players are inspected.
  • Injured players are removed from the field.
  • Time wasting occurs (more about this later).
  • Disciplinary sanctions occur (fouls, yellow or red cards).
  • Any medical stoppages allowed by the rules of the game.

In some cases, lengthy goal celebrations are accounted to the added time as well. Added time could also come from VARs. Crowd problems could also lead to time being added, so be on your best behavior when watching a match.

Referee Pierluigi Collina in action.

Referee Pierluigi Collina in action.

Laws of Added Time According to FIFA

According to the FIFA Laws of the Game, a referee decides on the extra time given for a particular half while the fourth official will show the amount of extra time on the board. A referee is allowed to prolong the time shown by the fourth official if there are any stoppages during extra time. However, a referee is not allowed to put the time lost in the second half.

If a penalty happens during extra time, referees are not allowed to end the game until the penalty has been taken. The half continues even if the penalty has to be retaken. This is the cause for many football shockers since penalties are scored at the end of the second half.

14 minutes of added time in the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar.

14 minutes of added time in the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar.

Why Is There So Much Added Time in Some Matches?

The 2022 FIFA World Cup had many matches with a significant amount of extra-time. For example, England vs Iran saw a total of 24 minutes added as there were two concussion-related injuries, 8 goals and 10 substitutions. This resulted in a match that lasted a total of 117 minutes.

In a newly amended rule of added time, legendary referee Pierluigi Collina, the head of FIFA's referees' committee, announced that fourth officials will be keeping count of time lost during a match. This is a stern method to tackle time wasting, which is a plague in football. The goal is make sure that matches end within the regulated 90 minutes.

Is Stoppage Time Controversial?

This is a topic that has been debated by officials since stoppage time was introduced in 1891. Some recent controversies include some major clubs in the English Premier League having minutes being added out of nowhere, especially when they're behind.

We have to remember that the official clock continues moving even during a referee's whistle. During the Serie A match between Juventus and Salernitana, Juventus was behind 2-1 before being awarded a penalty in the 93rd minute, where Leonardo Bonnucci scored.

Ten minutes of stoppage time is added.

Ten minutes of stoppage time is added.

Difference Between Added Time and Extra-Time

While added time is sometimes called extra-time, there's a major difference between the two. Added time is the additional time shown on the board of the fourth official at the end of every half of the match (this includes halves in extra-time as well). Added time is decided by the referee and the fourth official for lost time during a match.

Extra-time only applies when both teams are tied at the end of regulation time in a knockout stage. For instance, Bayern vs Liverpool in the UEFA Champions League Final saw the score at 1-1 at the end of regulation. This led to extra-time, which is a period of 30 minutes with 15-minute halves. Even during the two halves of extra-time, there may be added time as well.

Dejan Lovren with the last minute goal vs Dortmund.

Dejan Lovren with the last minute goal vs Dortmund.

Stoppage Time Shockers

There have been many cases of teams taking advantage of the additional time given and scoring match-winning goals. Here are some examples.

UEFA Europa League Semi-Final 2015, Liverpool vs Dortmund

This is known as one of the most remarkable comebacks for Liverpool. It was at the 91st minute where Dejan Lovren scored the winning goal to send Liverpool to the 2015 Europa League final.

UEFA Champions League Final 1999, Manchester United vs Bayern Munich

This was Man United's treble-winning season, but winning the Champions League came with a challenge from German big boys Bayern Munich. Bayern was leading 1-0 until regulation time was over, before United's Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and Teddy Sheringham scored two goals during added time to secure United's win. The goals were so late that the trophy already had Bayern's ribbons on it.

2013 FA Cup Final, Manchester City vs Wigan Athletic

This was a David vs Goliath match. The English Premier League's top gun, Manchester City, faced the soon-to-be relegated Wigan Athletic. Ben Watson of Wigan Athletic scored a last-minute goal to give his club the win and a spot in the 2014 Europa League. They became the first team to win the FA Cup and be relegated in the same season,

© 2022 Nigel Koay Talks Football