Referee Regs

Rules and Regulations

Without referees there is simply no game - they too play a pivotal part in the game

On this page you will find key resources from laws of the game to safeguarding information. 


Under 12s deliberate heading law change

Following insight, observation and feedback it was felt that the decision to restart the game with a free-kick on the penalty mark to the opposition where a player had deliberately headed the ball within their own penalty area was not in line with the ethos and aims of the trial.

Furthermore, there was a number of reported incidents where young players were lining up on the goal-line to face a shot from the penalty mark which was often drilled with speed and power towards the players – thus prompting safety concerns from players, parents, coaches etc and in essence defeating the whole purpose of the trial.

With this in mind, for the start of the 2023/24 season in games where the clubs and competition are taking part of the official FA trial, if a player deliberately heads the ball in their own penalty area then the referee will stop the game. The referee will then restart with an in-direct free-kick to the opposition from the side-line of the penalty area nearest to where the offence took place. Please see attached to give visual guidance. 

Playing the Game in Derbyshire

Match Day Guidance

Flexible Football, Surrey

Other Guidance


Laws of the Game

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Coaches - Development & Courses - FA Level 1

Criminal Records Checks

Keep up to date with our local safeguarding activities. You’ll find details of forthcoming safeguarding training courses and workshops, how to obtain a Criminal Record Check (CRC) if you need one – and lots of other relevant information.
Safeguarding and Welfare


Whatever your involvement in football, you have a responsibility to make our game as safe and enjoyable as possible for everyone.

This is particularly true if your role as a referee involves officiating matches where children and young people under the age of 18 are playing. It also applies if as you are officiating alongside under-18 referees and assistant referees.

Find out how The FA and CFAs manages safeguarding nationally and locally. You’ll also find detailed information on the game’s safeguarding strategy, and how it applies to you.