FA News






Goalposts are now ineligible for all levels of the FA NLS.


Car and Coach Parking / Access Roads


That car and coach parking/access roads is now ineligible at all levels of the FA NLS, unless they are specifically for;

a) Works that are required to improve access to the ground for disabled spectators.

b) Works required to satisfy statutory requirements imposed by Local Planning Authority or Highways Authority e.g. to increase a size of car park to prevent congestion on local roads.

c) Works required to resolve a specific safety issue.

Restricting Clubs that are eligible to apply – Below Step 7


Clubs playing below Step 7 of the FA NLS are now not eligible to apply to the FSIF. Clubs playing at Step 7 or above remain eligible.


Restricting repeat applicants


That the period between a Club receiving a maximum grant from the FSIF and being able to re-apply has increased from three years to five years.


Aligning Men’s and Women’s Football


Following the introduction of the Women’s Super League Division 2, there has been a subsequent re-structuring of the FA Women’s National League System below this level. Therefore, the current FSIF criteria regarding the Women’s game is out of date.


Helpfully, the Ground Grading Criteria that has been determined for each level of the Women’s NLS does generally parallel with the criteria for the FA NLS.  Accordingly, it is suggested that the same maximum grant award and maximum grant percentage could be adopted for the purposes of the FSIF funding criteria.


That the maximum grant amounts and maximum grant percentages are aligned for men’s and women’s football as indicated within the table. Doping control rooms and television broadcast requirements are not eligible.





This can be summarised as per the following table:


Men’s Level

Women’s Level

Maximum Grant Amount

Maximum Grant Percentage

Step 1 - Grade A

(Conference National)




Step 2 - Grade B

(Conference North and South)




Step 3 - Grade C

(Northern, Southern and Isthmian Premier)

Step S1 - Grade A

(Women’s Super League Division One)



Step 4 - Grade D

(Northern, Southern and Isthmian Division One)

Step S2 - Grade B

(Women’s Super League Division Two)



Step 5 - Grades E & F

(Regional Leagues, Premier Division)

Step W1 - Grade A

(Northern and Southern Women’s Premier League)



Step 6 - Grade G

(Regional Leagues, Division One)

Step W2 - Grade B

(Regional Combination Leagues)



Step 7 - Minimum Guidelines

(County Leagues)

Step W3 - Grade C

(Regional Leagues, Premier Division)



*Increases to £50,000 for applications for works to changing pavilions


Currently, where a Women’s club shares a ground with a Men's club, the highest Ground Grading Criteria (and maximum grant amount and percentage) would prevail. However, Women’s Clubs are also eligible for grants of up to £20,000 in any three-year period for work relating to Women's football, such as changing the shower layout, providing women’s toilets and so on.


FA National Adults Grassroots Conference

For the first time, The FA are running a two-day Conference at the iconic St Georges Park facility solely for Adult Clubs.

Few other countries have a range of league competitions that provide for so many people! This two day conference will deal with the challenges of running adult grassroots football today. It will listen to the views of those that run grassroots leagues and offer guidance in a number of areas:

For further information and to book; log onto http://adultleagues2015.firstmedia.co.uk/



Football Remembers

The following press release can be amended and used from Monday 3rd November. Leagues can make use of all the available resources on their website and twitter by clicking here.

Football to honour 1914 Christmas Truce centenary this December

· Every club in the country – from the Premier League to the grassroots - are being asked to create a unique photographic record of football a century on from the Christmas Truce

· The same activity will happen at every match – a mixed squad photo featuring both teams in the spirit of the togetherness shown by troops from both sides in December 1914

· Teams will combine for a mixed squad photo before kick-off. This picture can be uploaded to social media using #footballremembers and will be hosted on footballremembers.com

For immediate release

The Dorset Premier Football League
are to commemorate the centenary of one of the most iconic moments of the First World War - the 1914 Christmas Truce – as part of a week of remembrance activity in December 2014.

'Football Remembers Week' will take place from 5-14 December. A joint collaboration between The FA, the Premier League, the Football League and the British Council, the aim is to engage football fans and players at every level about what took place on Christmas Day one hundred years ago on the battlefields in Belgium.

On 25 December 1914, soldiers from both sides put down their weapons and crossed into ‘no man’s land’ to share in an impromptu ceasefire. First-hand accounts from the time include references to football being played and photographs taken.

All photos uploaded to social media using #footballremembers will be automatically uploaded to a special website – www.footballremembers.com. The site shall act as a moment of record of football in 2014, a century on from the First World War, and will be preserved for future generations.

HRH The Duke of Cambridge, President of The FA, said: “It promises to be a powerful way to engage and educate young people about such an important moment in our history. We all grew up with the story of soldiers from both sides putting down their arms on Christmas Day, and it remains wholly relevant today as a message of hope over adversity, even in the bleakest of times.”

How it will work

o For ALL matches taking place from 5-14 December, all players involved will pose together in a mixed group photograph as a mark of respect to those on both sides that took part in the 1914 Christmas Truce. Each home team should nominate someone to take the photo.

o Fans, teams and schools will be asked to upload their pre-match pictures via social media over the course of Football Remembers Week. Any match of any size can be uploaded, from school to Sunday league fixtures, five-a-side matches to kickabouts in the back garden.

o Those posting photos to social media should use #footballremembers to ensure it is uploaded to the special footballremembers.comwebsite. Any other information is welcome.

o The website shall act as a moment of record of football in 2014, a century on from the First World War, and will be preserved for future generations.

Football Remembers kicked off in May 2014 when the four partners launched a Football Remembers education pack that was sent to more than 30,000 schools across the UK. It includes resources to help children learn about the Truce – including eye-witness accounts, photos, drawings and letters from soldiers some of which have never been published before.

A key element of the Football Remembers education pack was a competition for schools and football academies to design a permanent Christmas Truce memorial for the National Memorial Arboretum.  The competition was judged by HRH The Duke of Cambridge – President of The FA – and Arsenal and England forward Theo Walcott.

The winning design was drawn by 10 year-old Spencer Turner from Farne Primary in Newcastle, and he will attend a special service later in the year to mark the unveiling at the Arboretum, near St. George’s Park.

Other Football Remembers activity taking place between now and the end of 2014 includes:


· Christmas Truce International Tournament in Ypres

o The Premier League has held this annual tournament in Ypres, the home of the Christmas Truce, for U12 footballers since 2011.

o A qualifying tournament will be held between 14-16 November in Ypres involving U12 teams from all 20 Premier League clubs

o This will be the first Christmas Truce International Tournament to be played on a new 3G pitch that the Premier League has gifted to the city of Ypres.

o Ten teams will play in the tournament: two each from the Premier League, German Bundesliga, French Ligue 1, Belgium Pro League, and one each from Scotland and Austria

o To commemorate the sacrifices made by soldiers from around the world there will be a community tournament made up of players for Premier League Kicks projects at home and around the world.

o An educational and culture programme accompanies the tournament as the players visit the site of the original Christmas truce site, Commonwealth and German war graves, preserved trenches and lay wreaths at the Last Post Ceremony at the Menin Gate.

· UK Parliamentary Reception

o To raise the profile of Football Remembers among Parliamentarians, Dan Jarvis, Labour MP for Barnsley Central and a former Major in the British Army, is hosting a reception at the House of Commons. 

· Poster competition with the National Football Museum - Young people are invited to create posters telling the stories of footballers who fought in the First World War and send them to the National Football Museum in Manchester https://schoolsonline.britishcouncil.org/classroom-resources/football-remembers/find-a-footballer

· International fixtures - England footballers will also be supporting the Football Remembers project during their international get-together in November ahead of the men’s fixtures with Slovenia and Scotland and the women’s historic Wembley match against Germany on 23 November.

· The FA and the Army FA – are working on a commemorative match involving the German Army.

To All Leagues in the National League System

Dear Colleagues

Please see below and the attached flyer regarding one-day practical workshops on Tuesday 25 November and then again on Tuesday 2 December for clubs, county FAs and leagues about lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender participation and how to tackle homophobia, biphobia and transphobia in football.  Attendance is free and registration opened yesterday.

Please could you pass the below information and attached flyer on to all your clubs.  For more information please contact Chris Gibbons at The FA by email at:chris.gibbons@thefa.com or on 0800 169 1863 ext 6807.

Many thanks for your assistance in this matter.

FA Workshop



See below the information in relation to the Head Injuries in Football:

New guidelines and rules for the 2014/15 season have been introduced by The FA, with the support of the wider game, for the management of concussion and head injuries in football.

This important campaign, supported by the Premier League, Football League and League Manager’s Association, will be accompanied by an education programme to be rolled out in conjunction with the Professional Footballers’ Association (PFA) to help raise awareness amongst players of the issue.

High profile England players, including Steven Gerrard, Leighton Baines and Rickie Lambert have also contributed to an educational film, produced by The FA, which will be widely available in support of written materials. Click here to view the film.

Since 2013 the FA’s medical committee, led by Dr Ian Beasley, has been reviewing head injuries and concussion in the game and has worked to understand best practice across other sports to enhance the existing guidelines for football in England.

The guidelines set out the important procedures and processes that follow any suspected head injury and how players should be re-introduced to competitive football over time through the new ‘return to play’ rules.

The rules detail that if there has been a confirmed or suspected period of loss of consciousness, the player must be removed from the field of play, and not be allowed to return. Where no loss of consciousness is apparent an on-field or touchline assessment will take place.

The FA’s recommendations set out the requirement for all players to undergo pre-season baseline cognitive testing every season, to detect any risk that may exist through previous injury, whilst any players that have suffered two or more episodes of head injury should go through mandatory detailed psychometric testing.

The return to play guidelines insist such testing should be carried out every 48 hours following an incident to assess the injury whilst a clinical assessment should be made daily, with a minimum period of six days in which time the player will be ineligible to return to play.

Furthermore, following a review of head injuries on the field of play the Premier League Doctor’s group, Chaired by Dr Gary O’Driscoll, also undertook a review of rules and policies which has resulted in new rules which were voted through by the Premier League’s shareholders at their AGM in June 2014.

Premier League rules have now been amended for the 2014/15 season to reflect the fact that the decision of the team doctor be final when determining whether or not a player who has sustained a head injury is fit to continue playing or training. The rules require the presence of a member of the medical team to look after players with a head injury that leave the field of play and an awareness campaign and presentations to players ahead of the new season.

Chair of The FA’s medical committee, Dr Ian Beasley, said: “Managers, players and clubs need to understand the risks associated with head injuries. The advice of medical professionals is key in this area, and whilst we have developed processes to deal with many types of injury this is an area that has perhaps needed some more scrutiny.

“We have worked closely with the stakeholders to develop these new guidelines and the message is clear for players; listen to medical advice and take no chances – stop playing and take your time to recover.”

In the last year coach and teacher education has also been amended. All training courses, from basic Level One coaching to the Advanced Resuscitation and Emergency Aid (AREA) – which is mandatory for professional clubs’ physiotherapists - include sections on concussion.

Guidance for elements such as the size, weight and pressure of footballs are controlled by FIFA and are available in the Laws of the Game.

Dr Beasley added: “We are committed to working with FIFA to understand the universal impact of head injury in football. We will ensure that it is high on FIFA’s agenda and will be discussing options for a new research programme with FIFA.”

A previous study, commissioned by The FA and PFA, which followed the effects of heading the ball over a ten year period, never reached its conclusion as the selected young players all failed to make the standard as professional players and fell out of the game after a period of time.

However, The FA is in discussion with the body that started the study to understand what findings were established from their research so that we can gain any understanding they can offer from their preliminary results.

The new guidelines and associated materials can be accessed by clicking here.