suspension of non-elite football

in line with the government's national lockdown measures, the majority of grassroots football in england is not permitted from tuesday 5th january

We note the UK Government’s announcement with regards to the new national COVID-19 restrictions and lockdown. As a result, the impact on ‘non elite’ football in England will include the suspension of fixtures and training across the following, with immediate effect:

· Steps three to six of the National League System (NLS)

· Tiers three to seven of the Women’s Football Pyramid

· Regional NLS feeder leagues

· Barclays FA WSL Academy League (unless under elite status)

· FA Girls Regional Talent Clubs (unless under elite status)

· All indoor and outdoor youth and adult grassroots football, including under 18s (except organised outdoor football for disabled people which is allowed to continue)

· Vitality Women’s FA Cup (which is currently classified as ‘non-elite’ at this stage in the competition)

It is extremely important that clubs, players, coaches, match officials, league officials, volunteers, parents, carers and facility providers adhere to the UK Government’s new national COVID-19 lockdown restrictions and we implore everyone to follow these.

Dialogue will continue with the Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport, leagues, competitions and County FAs and we will provide further updates for the 2020/21 Vitality Women’s FA Cup, Buildbase FA Vase and ‘non-elite’ football when relevant.

We would like to thank the football community once again for its hard work, resilience and understanding during such an incredibly challenging period for both the game and wider society.

read our county cup statement here




Affiliations, County Cups & Risk Assesments

We're offering all clubs who affiliated for the 2019/20 season, FREE affiliation for the 2020/21 season.

We are also giving clubs FREE entry into our County Cups for the 2020/21 season. 

Affiliated clubs organising and/or hosting football activities have a legal duty to take reasonable care to avoid acts or omissions which are a reasonably foreseeable risk.

Clubs should carry out Covid-19 risk assessments thatcover all risks, including those associated with the pandemic and how the club intends to ensure that its members and activities will operate within the Government guidance.






How does Covid-19 affect our match officials?

The effects of the pandemic are still hitting all of us, and it's all change on a matchday for the time being.

Referee's will need to come to terms with the changes, and ensure they are adhering to social distancing and taking extra precaution, just like players, coaches and spectators do on a matchday. 

Some of the guidelines include:

• Minimise face-to-face contact where possible;
• Avoid lengthy periods of time in enclosed spaces;
• Ensure appropriate hygiene protocols are always in place;
• Encourage maintenance of appropriate social-distancing measures.

Covid-19 guidance on re-starting competitive grassroots football For Referees


Referee Specific Guidance on Returning to NLS Football

Below are some documents to help referee's in the County learn about the changes, along with guidance notes for them.

For support on any of the above, please contact our Referee Development Officer, Richard Mason on 01626 325917, or email - richard.mason@devonfa.com

Refereeing Support
paul m
It's vitally important for all of us involved in football to read the guidance from the FA and the Government, as well as take measures and precautions to stop the virus spreading whilst we are on or off the pitch.
- Paul Morrison, Devon FA Chief Executive CLICK HERE FOR A SUMMARY OF THE FA'S GUIDANCE