Latest guidance on permitted grassroots football activity during COVID-19

The FA have today issued further guidance to all grassroots football and informal football activity outside the professional game following the Government’s relaxation of COVID-19 restrictions from 1 June 2020.

Consistent with Government advice published on Monday 1 June, the following outdoor football activity is currently permitted:

• playing football individually. For example, practice of individual skills or fitness activities;

• playing football with your family or other people living in your household;

• football training or fitness activities in groups of no more than six, keeping two metres apart at all times.

Sharing of equipment should be kept to a minimum and strong hand hygiene practices should be in place before and after. Physical contact with anyone outside of your household is not permitted, therefore playing of any games (small-sided or full) is also not permitted at this time. Avoid meeting in groups of six in busy or overcrowded areas if it is so busy that it is not possible to maintain social distancing at all times.

Football coaches can now undertake small group sessions up to six people (including the coach) but are reminded to follow FA safeguarding policy when coaching/working with children. This must include risk assessing the activities, gaining consent from parents/carers and ensuring you are in sight of another adult. For example, a parent/carer or another coach and that the ratio of coach to different age-groups of children is appropriate – see download 5.5 . For clarity, the additional parent/carer or coach is not included as part of the group of six but must remain in sight of the activity.

It is permissible for coaches to organise a training session that has two or more groups of six (including the coach) involved in the session, as long as the groups of six are kept separate, everyone is socially distancing and strict hygiene measures are in place with any equipment.

Football coaches working with people with impairments must ensure they can adequately cater for any additional needs whilst still avoiding physical contact and maintaining social distancing. Individuals should follow Government guidance relevant to their own impairment or health condition.

Please be reminded, if an individual is symptomatic, living in a household with a possible COVID-19 infection or if you’re classified as extremely vulnerable on health grounds, the guidance is that you should remain at home.

We continue to work closely with DCMS and Sport England in order to set out good practice guidance for those responsible for delivering different aspects of grassroots football and we will provide further updates to as guidance information is shared.