Tag: the FA

Breaking News – FA & PFA Commission Dementia Link with Football

The Football Association and the Professional Footballers’ Association have appointed Dr William Stewart and colleagues at the University of Glasgow and the Hampden Sports Clinic to lead an independent research study into the incidence of degenerative neurocognitive disease in ex-professional footballers.

Following two years of research and development The FA and the PFA have today confirmed the next step in their commitment to commissioning an evidence-based study into the long-term effects of participation in football. This new study, titled ‘Football’s Influence on Lifelong Health and Dementia Risk’ [FIELD], is scheduled to start in January 2018.

The appointment of the research team, led by Dr William Stewart, was made by The FA Expert Panel in Concussion following an open tender process to agree the parameters of the new independent research. Dr Stewart and colleagues in Glasgow have extensive research expertise in brain injury, public health and sports medicine.

They have been tasked with conducting studies to address the question: ‘Is the incidence of degenerative neurocognitive disease more common in ex-professional footballers than in the normal population?’

 The FIELD study is designed to look at a wide range of physical and mental health outcomes, including neurodegenerative disease, in approximately 15,000 former professional footballers and compare these results to matched general population health data.

 Dr William Stewart, Consultant Neuropathologist at the Queen Elizabeth University Hospital in Glasgow, said: “In the past decade there have been growing concerns around perceived increased risk of dementia through participation in contact sports, however, research data to support and quantify this risk have been lacking.

“Through the FIELD study we hope to be able to provide some understanding of the long-term health impact of football within the next two to three years.”

Martin Glenn, FA Chief Executive, added: “This new research will be one the most comprehensive studies ever commissioned into the long-term health of former footballers. Dementia can have a devastating effect and, as the governing body of English football, we felt compelled to commission a significant new study in order to fully understand if there are any potential risks associated with playing the game.

“The FA’s Head of Medicine, Dr Charlotte Cowie, has been instrumental in commissioning this research and also ensuring that the study will be both objective and rigorous.”

Gordon Taylor OBE, PFA Chief Executive, said: “The PFA is and always has been committed to a duty of care for all past, current and future members and has lobbied the football authorities to join with us on all aspects of health and safety. The regulations in place for concussion and heart screening are testimony to this. Neurological problems in later life which may be connected to concussion, head injuries and heading the ball have been on our agenda for the last twenty years.

“Research undertaken so far has been inconclusive and we are now fully appreciative of The FA’s support in establishing a robust, comprehensive research strategy which will help determine whether the incidence of degenerative neurocognitive disease is more common in former professional footballers than in the normal population. In the meantime we will continue to offer help to all our former members and families in a variety of ways.”

The FA and the PFA will jointly-fund the research and the sports concussion research charity The Drake Foundation will project manage the study, adding another level of independence and credibility to the findings. The Drake Foundation was founded in 2014 and is a leading authority on head injuries in sport, committed to improving evidence-based measures for the understanding of head injuries in sport, based on scientific research and insight.

Dr William Stewart was one of the founder members of The FA Expert Panel in Concussion, which was established in 2015 to share expertise and knowledge in this area. During the tender and consultation process for this new research study, Dr Stewart stepped away from his role on the Panel prior to this research call to protect the integrity of the submission and selection process.

Peter Hamlyn MBBS BSc MD FRCS FISM a leading consultant spinal and neurological surgeon and Chair of The FA Expert Panel in Concussion said: “When the Panel was brought together two years ago, our first focus was to ensure that football had appropriate protocols and guidelines on concussion. These were published and distributed to every club in the country for the professional and grassroots game.

“We then turned our attention to potential long-term neurological effects of careers in football. There have been many previous studies all of which have proved inconclusive in regards even the most basic questions. So we have focused our initial endeavour on answering whether footballers are indeed more likely to suffer long-term brain injuries than the general population. Only by conclusively knowing this can we make progress. We hope this new study will provide a much needed leap forward in our understanding.”

 

Ref knocked out after being HEADBUTTED by red carded player

Sunday league game ended in extreme violence when Kieran Kimberley, having already been sent off during the game and violently head butted referee Craig Ward causing Ward to be knocked unconscious.

The game involved Kimberley’s team, Stockingford White Lion, and Grendon FC in the Nuneaton and District Sunday League.

Kimberley attacked Mr Ward moments after the final whistle of the match on October 1. He was knocked unconscious from the headbutt – and needed medical treatment for a gash on his nose.

In a statement read in court, Mr Ward said: “I could see the man come towards me, and his head moved towards my eyebrow.”The next thing, I woke up on the floor bleeding from the bridge of my nose.”It has left me feeling gutted. It was just a game of football. “It wasn’t even a bad-tempered game. I may not referee again in the future.”

 

Referee Mr Ward unconscious after the assault – image courtesy Birmingham Mail

 

Chair of the magistrates, Vanessa Marvell, said: “We have considered this carefully, and we do find that this was so serious that it has to have a custodial sentence, but we are going to suspend that sentence.

“This was serious because you used your head as a weapon to cause injury, and it was an unprovoked attack on someone who was carrying out their duties as a football referee.”

Prosecutor Jez Newsome said: “The victim was the referee of a game on Sunday October 1, in which the defendant was issued two yellow cards, which resulted in a red card.

“At the end of the game Mr Ward was trying to explain it to the team manager, and Mr Kimberley approached them, talking to the referee about the repercussions of the red card.”

Mr Newsome said that when Kimberley was arrested later that day and interviewed, he made a full admission to what he described as “a moment of madness,” but claimed he felt the ref was laughing and winding him up.

He said he had not meant to cause the injury, and he suggested the ref had “moved his arm and I thought he was going to hit me” – which was rejected by the prosecution.

 

Kieran Kimberley outside court (Image: Paul Beard)

Mr Newsome said: “He says the victim has a reputation as being a wind-up who is known to provoke players. “The Crown in no way accept that” “This is a referee who gives up his time at weekends to enable people to play on a football field.”

Paul O’Keeffe, defending, said: “He described it as a moment of madness, and that he should not have done it. “Mr Kimberley accepts his action was completely unwarranted, and out of proportion to anything that happened at the time.” He didn’t wish to cause injury.

Paul O’Keeffe, defending, said: “He described it as a moment of madness, and that he should not have done it.

Kimberley was handed a four-month suspended sentence and ordered to pay his victim £300 in compensation, £185 court costs and a £115 victim surcharge.

We spoke directly to the RDO from the Birmingham County FA who confirmed that they were aware of the incident, had been in contact with Mr Ward to offer support during the court proceedings. A local county FA investigation will now begin.

WHY GAMES ARE SO IMPORTANT TO YOUNG PLAYERS

This article looks at using a more games-based approach for players aged 5-11 in the Foundation Phase and the potential benefits of this way of working.

For many young children, playing in games of football is the driving force behind their early engagement with the sport and their motivation, enthusiasm and focus remain high when taking part in these games. To clarify, games can be small-number games in training (such as 1v1, 2v2, 3v3) as well as any suitable competitive small-sided game format as part of a league, festival or tournament.

The Foundation Phase 'experience'

Small sided games are valuable for the development of foundation phase players

The players need this exposure to help their development. The part that we play as adults and coaches is to help manage the ups and downs, the successes and disappointments and the development opportunities that these encounters will provide. We must create an environment that is safe and supportive whilst being competitive and player centred. If we can provide this then there is an increased chance of players staying with the sport and as such giving us, the coaches, a chance to develop them even further

The Approach

If you have the opportunity to take your team indoors to play Futsal in the coming months you will have the perfect opportunity to help players begin to understand the game. Try to place your players in a wide range of different situations. Help them to recognise the situation they are in and then work together to arrive at the most effective solution or outcome. This will take time as these solutions will have to be tried and tested over a long period of time and through a large number of similar repetitions.

For example, in a game of Futsal the player will be challenged to process: where they are on court, how much space they have to play in, how much support (if any) is around, where the pressure might be coming from and how many defenders might be present (this is not exhaustive but gives an idea of all the visual and perceptual processing that might be going on).

The Foundation Phase 'experience'

Futsal is the perfect activity for the winter months

When the game is going on this will happen in a very short space of time and will require a huge amount of practice to refine the processing of so much information. That is why this approach is a long term one involving lots of repetition of similar but not identical situations and through a coaching methodology that helps and supports the player to make sense of all the information coming in. The role of the coach will be to help the player understand their own capabilities and to support them as they experiment and explore how these capabilities can provide effective solutions to the many situations they will encounter in the game. This approach will also help the player and the coach identify areas that need to be developed in order to be more effective in what they do.

Pete Sturgess is FA Technical Lead for players aged 5-11.

About Pete

Name: Pete Sturgess
Role: FA Technical Lead for players aged 5-11
Follow: @Sturge_p

HOW FIFA 18 CAN HELP ENGAGE WITH YOUNG PLAYERS AT TRAINING

Creative ways to use the popular football video game to connect with young players.

This Christmas many of the players we coach will enjoy playing the newly released FIFA  video game.

Parents will battle with their children, bargaining and arguing about how long they can play for, and at what time of day.

Although some may be sceptical about too many hours in front of a screen, the careful design of video games also provides high potential for learning.

Playing video games tends to be so enjoyable that people view video games as a form of entertainment rather than education – but there are many hidden benefits.

Video games have the ability to place people into the state of ‘Flow’ – a psychological state that boosts learning and performance.

This ‘Flow Zone’ is characterised as a state in which someone is completely immersed in the activity, and thoroughly enjoying the process of the activity (intrinsically motivated).

As a concept, it was first shared by Hungarian psychologist, Mihály Csikszentmihályi, in the 1970’s, who found that the feeling of flow is dependent on three conditions:

  • The activity has a clear set of goals
  • Clear and immediate feedback provided
  • Person must have confidence in their own ability to meet goals of the activity

These conditions are common of video game design. And as grassroots football coaches, there is an opportunity here for us to harness our players’ engagement with FIFA to help them to learn more about the game of football.

Digital Coaches

To do that, the following may be helpful when attempting to link learning from FIFA  to your team’s training sessions or matches:

  • Set tactical challenges – use learning focus of the training session to devise specific challenges for players to focus on when playing FIFA.

For example, if the learning focus of training is ‘positive and enthusiastic defending’, the FIFA  challenge could be to ‘try and prevent Messi from dribbling’.

To support the player during their FIFA  challenge, request that players jot down their progress in the challenge as it happens. An advantage of football video games, compared to physical football is that players have a PAUSE button – they can use this to their advantage in order to spend time explicitly reflecting on their learning.

  • Multi-player (with team mates) – organise your team into two smaller sub teams, so they work collaboratively to outwit their opponent in a FIFA  game.

Ask each sub team to develop an ‘in possession’ and ‘out of possession’ strategy, which they can present at training, prior to their FIFA  game.

At the next training session, each sub team can then present how their strategy developed or changed during game play, and why.

  • Select a particular FIFA character – for the next training session, challenge players to extend their commitment to the character, on to the pitch.

A player might choose to be John Stones on FIFA, so at training encourage the player to play like John Stones. This will encourage them to reflect on and explore Stones’ technical, tactical, psychological, social and physical attributes.

  • Arrival activity – reenact memorable moments from previous week’s experiences of playing FIFA.

Set up a space on the pitch for players to share their experiences of playing FIFA.

This might involve some players working in small groups or pairs to demonstrate specific plays, some players working individually to practice particular skills, or some players simply talking to one another about new problems or solutions from FIFA .

Amy Price is Lecturer in Physical and Sport Education at St Mary’s University in London. Amy holds the UEFA A Licence and is an FA Coach Mentor and Level 1 and 2 Tutor.

HOW TO MAKE MATCHDAY PLAYER-CENTRED

A matchday is a significant learning opportunity for players and should be treated as such. Coaches should focus upon helping each player to maximise this opportunity and embrace the matchday experience. A good start point for coaches is to be clear about what players will try to learn on matchday. Too often coaches try and fix everything which can lead to a lack of focus and confusion for players.

Matchday learning focus

When planning for matchday consider the following:

1. What is success?

2. Consistency with training objectives/focus

What is success?

What success means and looks like generally differs for player to player. Coaches should develop an appreciation each player’s perspective enhancing their understanding of the individual and their motivation.

The coach’s role is to help players and both training and matchday should be about the players not the coach. Consequently, the coach alone should not decide the success of a matchday and nor should the outcome of the match.

Consistency with the training focus

Continuation of the training theme on matchday allows players to demonstrate and extend their learning. This also helps the coach to be specific in their observation and with their feedback. Resultantly, the messages communicated to players have a purpose and support learning.

Team selection top tips

1. Equal opportunities to learn

A coach has a duty of care to ensure that each player is given equal opportunity to learn. Give each player the same amount of time on the field with challenges relevant to the needs of the individual.

2. Select teams on rotation

Ensure all players are given opportunity to start matches. If a player doesn’t start one week, ensure they start next week.

3. Encourage and provide opportunities for all players to experience different positions.

Rarely will a young player play in one position throughout their footballing experience. Being exposed to different positions presents players with a variety of pictures of the game, helping them to learn a variety of roles and responsibilities and enabling them to make the link between different positions.

4. Don’t rotate positions too frequently

Be careful not to rotate positions too frequently as this can hinder motivation, confidence and learning, particularly as players get older. Consider the player who finally gets an opportunity to play as the striker but doesn’t see much of the ball because the opposition are stronger and dominate the game.

Three games in any given position presents opportunities for a player to familiarise themselves with the role as well as face different opponents and challenges allowing learning to take place.

5. Player Ownership

Allow the players to pick the team. Young players select teams, players and formations on computer games such as Football Manager and FIFA and are adept at doing so. Allowing them to select the matchday team engages players in peer learning, a powerful form of cooperative learning.

To maximise the learning opportunity affinity groups of 4-6 players are recommended. This encourages all players to share their views and reduces the dominance of individual players.

Team and induvidual challenges

Magic 3

It is crucial not to overload players with information that they won’t remember. Three simple bits of information is ample. One way of structuring challenges is to set a challenge for the team, one for each unit (defence/midfield/attack), and one for each individual.

This format encourages teamwork whilst allowing for individual achievement. Challenges can be set in a number of ways.

1. Coach sets challenges for players
2. Players set the challenges
3. Player challenge cards

Challenges set by the coach allow alignment with the training objectives and ensure challenges are pitched appropriately. Coaches should reflect on recent training sessions and ask:

What was he/she good at?

What does he/she need more help with or practice at doing?

The challenges should emerge from your answers. Importantly, the challenges should be alternated to ensure the player has a chance to showcase what they are good at as well as what they need more practice at.

Allowing players to set their own challenges can lead to increased buy-in. However, be sure to ask why they’ve set the challenge and what success will look like? When players can articulate the meaning of the challenge it shows an understanding of the game and an awareness of where they are at in their learning.

Role models

Young players love emulating their football idols do, so why not base challenges on what their idols do?

1. Players pick a challenge card with a footballer on the front [see right], for and the challenge on the reverse becomes their individual challenge throughout the match:

Language

The language used when setting individual challenges should focus on things under the player’s control. When attempting a challenge there are many variables that determine success. Setting a challenge such as score 3 goals or 5 tackles are not within a player’s control and should be avoided.

About Ceri

Role: Lecturer in Sports Development and Coaching

Follow: @CeriBowley

FA Girls’ Football Week 6th-12th November

FA Girls’ Football Week is your opportunity to engage as many women and girls as possible in football.  During FA Girls’ Football Week the whole country will gear up to encourage football activities for girls, which can include playing, training or even learning more about the beautiful game.

FA Girls’ Football Week is taking place on the 6th-12th November.

Organisations can register their ongoing activities as part of the week, or maybe even start something new to kickstart girls’ football.  It’s a great chance to recruit new players and volunteers.  Take a look at this fantastic guide to help you decide what activities to run during the week.

“Any girl can be involved regardless of experience or knowledge of the game. We need everyone to spread the word to get more girls than ever playing football and having fun!”

Register any activities you have planned for the week now and you will receive access to a range of resources designed to help you host events in a safe and enjoyable environment.

Click here to register your activities.

Don’t forget to share all of the great stuff you do during Girls’ Football Week by using the hashtag #GirlsFootballWeek on Twitter.

BREAKING – FA LAUNCHES THIRD GRASSROOTS FOOTBALL SURVEY

The FA has today launched the 2017 Grassroots Football Survey.

The Grassroots Football Survey offers unparalleled insight into the amateur game by providing a platform for those directly involved to give feedback using an online poll.

28,750 and 30,161 people – including; players, coaches, referees, staff and general volunteers – demonstrated a commitment to improving the game at a grassroots level in England by completing the 2015 and 2016 versions of the survey respectively.

Kelly Simmons, Director of Participation and Development, said: “Since launching in 2015, the Grassroots Survey has started to become a fixture of the football season at this level.

“The past two editions have informed our understanding of the game by providing those that know and understand it best with an opportunity to have their voices heard.

“The real and measurable feedback provided in this survey will allow us to continue prioritising and maximising in the areas that really matter, so I would encourage everyone who is directly involved in the game to take part.”

Responses in previous years have successfully highlighted areas of particular importance to the grassroots community, including; general satisfaction with County FAs, rating of pitch availability and quality, parent’s opinions as to the standard of football played by their children and receiving updates from The FA and County FAs.It is hoped that this year’s edition will draw in an even greater level of responses, highlight progress made and indicate any remaining challenges in order to deliver open and flexible playing opportunities For All.

Visit TheFA.com/HaveYourSay by Monday 30 October to complete the 2017 Grassroots Football Survey.

 

BREAKING – THE FA AND FOOTBALL FOUNDATION LAUNCH £300,000 FUTSAL FUND

The Football Association and Football Foundation have today (Monday 18 September) launched a £300,000 fund aimed at developing the sport of Futsal in England.

  • Equipment, coaching and referee starter packs made available to boost the sport
  • Fund aims to create more Futsal leagues and competitions across the country
  • Applications are now open and close on Friday 6 October

 Futsal is a five-a-side game, normally played on a flat indoor pitch with hockey-sized goals and a size-four ball that has a reduced bounce. The exciting, fast-paced sport is played across the world and is officially recognised by both UEFA and FIFA.

County FAs, youth football leagues, youth Futsal leagues, schools (excluding primary level), senior colleges and sixth forms are being encouraged to apply for a ‘Futsal starter pack’, which includes Futsal-specific equipment including goals, balls and bibs, as well as FA accredited coaching and refereeing courses.

The starter packs are designed to adapt existing sports halls, playgrounds and other hard surface facilities by providing new and existing players with the necessary tools and skills to develop and maintain Futsal leagues, competitions and fixtures across the country. Applications are now open and close at 5pm on Friday 6 October. 

Specifically, applications in the following categories will be prioritised:

  • Female Futsal (12-18 years)
  • Youth Futsal (14 years-and-over)
  • Youth football leagues (U14-to-U18)
  • Association of Colleges (AoC) members with facilities offering community usage
  • English Schools’ Football Association (ESFA) and Independent Schools Football Association (ISFA) member schools with facilities offering community usage

The scheme will be delivered by the Football Foundation, the nation’s largest sports charity. As well as delivering Grow the Game, the Football Foundation delivers the Premier League & The FA Facilities Fund on behalf of the Premier League, The FA and the Government, through Sport England. Since 2000, the Foundation has supported over 15,000 grassroots projects worth more than £1.4bn.

Michael Skubala, England Futsal Head Coach, said: “The FA recognises Futsal’s increasing importance and popularity. Through our partnership with the Football Foundation, the fund is a fantastic way to celebrate and start to grow the sport in this country. We want to see more players playing the sport in new leagues and competitions, and I would encourage all those who are eligible to apply for the scheme by Friday 6 October.

“Futsal is a sport in its own right with its own pathway to becoming an England International. Futsal also promotes and practices both inclusivity and diversity – it is a sport for players and coaches from different genders, ethnic backgrounds, faiths, ages, sexual orientations and the disabled.”

 

Paul Thorogood, Football Foundation CEO, said: “The Football Foundation is delighted to be delivering this funding scheme on The FA’s behalf. We want to see more people playing Futsal, so these starter packs are great news for those looking to take up the sport. The application deadline is Friday 6 October and anyone who thinks they are eligible should visit our website to find out more information on the scheme.”

To apply for a Futsal starter pack, please visit the Football Foundation website.

 

Respect – FA announce 75% discount off Respect equipment

The grassroots football season has begun with a huge and refreshed push by The FA and Football Foundation on the Respect scheme to ensure that football – both on and off the pitch – continues to be enjoyable, inclusive and a positive experience For All.

This scheme offers clubs, leagues and schools with the opportunity to purchase Respect equipment which, if used effectively, will help us to achieve this.

Equipment is currently available at a substantially discounted rate for only a six-week period. Each are able to take advantage now and apply for a voucher which offers a 75% discount, until 8 October 2017. From 9 October, the vouchers will revert back to a 50% discount.

Are you eligible?

The scheme is open to:

  • FA affiliated clubs
  • FA affiliated leagues
  • Schools based in England

You may submit one application to the scheme per season.

Complete the application form

We accept applications to the Respect scheme all year round.

In order to complete the application form you will need a valid affiliation number for your club or league, or your school’s Edubase number.

Please complete the Respect Equipment Application form to apply for a voucher.

Complete the Respect Equipment Application form

FA Breaking News !!!!! Subsidised Defibrillators for Football Clubs

The British Heart Foundation (BHF) and The Football Association (The FA) are calling on grassroots and amateur football clubs in England to help save more lives from cardiac arrests by installing lifesaving defibrillators.

Less than 1 in 10 people survive an out-of-hospital cardiac arrest in the UK.

You can help beat those odds by applying for a defibrillator.

The Football Association (FA) and The British Heart Foundation (BHF) have worked in partnership to award a grant for two-thirds of the cost of a defibrillator. This means your club will only pay £318 (+VAT)

We have already placed 640 defibrillators in football clubs across the UK and we now have 900 more available for clubs in the National League System, Women’s Pyramid of Football Clubs and Charter Standard Clubs. So, this is a great opportunity to get one for your club.

Once your application is approved you will be given instructions on how to pay your £318 + VAT. You will receive your defibrillator once we have received the money from your club.

 

Further information

The BHF and The FA have already helped part-fund and place around 600 defibrillators at grassroots clubs across the country and are now inviting applications from clubs operating within the National League System, Women’s Pyramid of Football or Charter Standard Programme for a further 900 available.

Lisa Hodgson, FA Medical Education Lead, said: “The FA continues to recognise the importance of providing timely and appropriate emergency first aid following casualties at footballing activities.

“Alongside our partners at the British Heart Foundation and WEL Medical, we are supplementing our CPR training by providing an excellent opportunity to receive equipment that could mean all the difference in a potentially life-threatening situation. I would implore football clubs across the country to apply.”

Research shows that over 90% of sudden cardiac arrests in young athletes happen either during or immediately after exercise (1) and those with an inherited heart condition can be up to three times as likely to suffer a sudden cardiac arrest if they participate in intensive or strenuous exercise (2).

At least three fatalities occurred during football matches or training this year in England due to cardiac arrest, including former England international Ugo Ehiogu who died whilst working as coach at Tottenham Hotspur FC. A cardiac arrest is when a person’s heart stops pumping blood around their body and to their brain. It causes the person to fall unconscious and stop breathing, or stop breathing normally.

For every minute without CPR and defibrillation, a person’s chance of survival decreases by around 10 per cent (3). A defibrillator is an automatic device that can be used by the public to shock the heart back into a normal rhythm during cardiac arrest. By performing CPR and using a defibrillator until an ambulance arrives, you can help double the victim’s chance of survival.

Simon Gillespie, Chief Executive at the British Heart Foundation, said: “Sadly there are hundreds of thousands of people in the UK with a faulty gene which puts them at risk of sudden death from a cardiac arrest.

“When someone collapses on the football pitch and their heart stops, the next few seconds are absolutely critical. Every minute without CPR and defibrillation can reduce their chance of survival by ten per cent.

“Defibrillators can be the difference between life and death, which is why we’re urging football clubs across England to apply for this vital equipment and have it nearby in case of an emergency.”

There are around 30,000 out-of-hospital cardiac arrests in England every year. However, fewer than one in ten people survive (4).

You can apply for a defibrillator by visiting: www.footballdefibs.org

The FA Announce Guide to Improving Match Day for Children

We can all help children enjoy football more by creating the right environment.

That is why The FA has produced an easy-to-follow guide to help improve the matchday experience for younger players.

From introducing codes of conduct to simply providing refreshments, the guide offers plenty of tips to help every volunteer, coach or manager of a grassroots youth team.

There has never been as many youth teams (over 62,000) playing across the country and we can all do our bit to ensure our young players stay in love with the game.

USEFUL RESOURCES

Get your FREE guide HERE

Criminal record checks for those working with children

Criminal Record Checks (CRC) in Football

The FA’s Policy

As part of our safeguarding children strategy, The FA requires those working in eligible* roles with children and young people to pass a criminal records check. This is in line with legislation and government guidance and is standard practice.

We provide the framework and guidance for Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) checks in football and the leagues and clubs then have to implement this to ensure that those who are required to have checks done, do so.

The majority of checks are processed electronically, ensuring that people can be confirmed to work with children and young people swiftly. Where the check highlights relevant information, this is investigated further and a risk assessment is carried out to establish whether or not they will be accepted to work with children and young people in football.

Activities that require a check (Eligibility)
* Eligibility is governed by legislation and government guidance. In brief this means, anyone aged 16 years or over who undertakes any unsupervised roles with children and young people under the age of 18.

These activities include managing, training, coaching and supervising as well as giving advice or guidance on well-being, caring for children or driving a vehicle solely for children on behalf of a club or organisation. In youth football all coaches and managers must hold a current, FA accepted check. This is part of the affiliation criteria for youth football.

Anyone undertaking these activities in football MUST obtain a DBS Enhanced Criminal Record with Children’s Barred List Check.  Role specific guidance for clubs, coaches referees and FA licensed tutors is hosted below along with the CRC eligibility criteria guidance document.

You may have more than one role in football but you only need one check to cover all your roles in affiliated grassroots football.  Please note that this may be different if seeking work with professional clubs.

Guidance on how to get a check
Select the activity in which you have the most frequent contact with U18s from the table below and follow up with the relevant contact point:

Your role in football

  • Grassroots U18s coach, manager, first aider or any other club based eligible role

Speak to your club welfare officer

 

  • Club welfare officer, youth league welfare officer

Speak to your CFA welfare officer

 

  • Referee, referee mentor, referee coach, referee assessor and referee tutor in U18 football

Contact your CFA referee development officer

 

  • Licensed coach applicant

Call 0845 210 8080 or email FAChecks@TheFA.com for advice

 

  • Working in a private soccer school or unaffiliated football

You may not be able to get an FA enhanced CRC – speak to your line manager or call 0845 210 8080 or email FAChecks@TheFA.com for advice

 

  • Working in a Premier League club

Contact the designated safeguarding officer at your Club

 

  • Working in an English Football League Club

Contact the Designated Safeguarding Officer at your Club, or contact 0845 210 8080 or email FAChecks@TheFA.com for advice

 

  • Unsure what you should be doing

Call 0845 210 8080 or email FAChecks@TheFA.com for advice

 

Click here for a full list of County FA contacts

Applying for electronic checks is straightforward. For applicant guidance click here and verifiers guidance click here.

Current costs for checks

You are Administration fee paper application method Administration fee online application method Government charge Total
A Volunteer  £20  £10  Nil  £20 or £10 depending on application method
Not a Volunteer  £20  £10  £44  £64 or £54 depending on application method

Paper-based CRC application forms option are available, where online applications cannot be made.

Tracking who has completed checks and training at club level
The FA online Safeguarding Service (click here) enables club welfare officers (CWOs) and assistant CWOs to track and manage club members who are required to do a check and safeguarding children training.

To register your club to use the online disclosures CRC service or to make enquiries not covered by the guidance provided here, please click here or  contact FAchecks@TheFA.com or call 0845 210 8080 and The FA Criminal Records Body will be happy to assist.