Setting Up A Club

Before starting up a new team, you should ask: are there enough potential players? Are there enough volunteers to run the club? Each individual club require specific roles within there club for both adult and youth.

We have outlined below information you need with regard to forming a new club.


A club must have rules that are written in a club constitution that all members must agree at an Annual General Meeting (AGM), in order to affiliate to their County Football Association (County F.A.).  A set of suggested club rules for members clubs can be provided, these can be found:

Club Officials

All clubs need to appoint a Chairman, Secretary and Treasurer with no one person holding more than two of these positions.  A Club Welfare Officers is required if the club have any youth teams (Under18 and below) and they must have attended the FA Safeguarding Workshop, the Welfare Officer Workshop training and have an enhanced FA CRB check.  County FA’s organise these 3 hour workshops.

Club Committee

The Club Officials and other members of the club may form a Committee to oversee the running of the club on behalf other members. 

Bank Account

All clubs need to have a separate bank account in order to affiliate to their County FA.  It is recommended that there are two of three signatories for the account and that two signatories are required for cheques. 

As a new club, it will be important to raise funds quickly to cover the essential expenditure such as affiliation fees, league membership fee, pitch hire charges and kit. Decide on the fee for annual player subscription and set up a bank account in the club name.


All clubs need to affiliate to their local County FA in order to play in sanctioned competitions and this ensures the club is within The FA structures of football.  Affiliation acts as a quality assurance and a safety net to help protect players, clubs, officials and administrators.  Affiliation takes place pre-season and County FA’s have different deadline dates.  All clubs renew their affiliation each year.


It is recommended that County FAs require their clubs to have £10m public liability cover in order to affiliate.  In many instances the County FA with which they affiliate will offer and can prove this level of cover.  Ensure the club has appropriate insurance cover.

League Registration

All clubs must register with a league in order to have their team(s) play within that specific competition.  Contact the league well before the start of the season to discuss entering a team.  Leagues may want to interview new clubs prior to the summer AGM.  Click here to find out contact details for leagues in Hertfordshire.

Clubs should understand the rules of the competition they enter. Fixtures are administered by the competition, advising clubs of forthcoming games. For home matches, the secretary must arrange pitch hire and notify opponents and officials the kick-off time and venue. For away games, tell your players the kick-off time and arrange transport if necessary.

Player Registration

The league and cup competitions you enter will have rules regarding player registration. These rules will be provided to you on entering the competition. You are advised to familiarise yourself with the rules covering formal approach of players.  At this point it is important to organise adequate insurance for players in case of accident or injury. Most players will be registered as non – contract players so are able to be registered with clubs in other leagues and can play on a Saturday and a Sunday for example.

All player discipline is administered by the County FA and the club secretary is responsible for ensuring all players are eligible to play.

Football Pitch

Identify a pitch where you would like to play your games and train.  Contact the owner of the pitch or facility to agree hiring it for the season.  In many cases this may be the Local Authority, Parish Council or Local Education Authority. Pitch hire costs and terms vary widely, so take note of these and also check if you need to take out insurance. You will also need to organise kit for your team.

Codes of Conduct

A club should implement codes of conduct by which it would like all its members, spectators and players to abide by and identify the possible sanctions that may apply if they don’t.

New club checklist:

  • Select club name and colours
  • Appoint club officials
  • Write club constitution and organise Annual General Meeting
  • Affiliate with Hertfordshire FA and the league you wish to enter
  • Produce a list of running costs
  • Understand the rules of competitions you wish to enter
  • Familiarise yourself with Safeguarding Children rules if running a team including under-18s or vulnerable adults (Please contact Richard Drake – Raising Standards Officer for advise and guidance)
  • Obtain adequate insurance (Provisions are made as part of your affiliation with Hertfordshire FA)
  • Purchase suitable kit and equipment
  • Hire pitches for matches and training
  • Raise fund and set up a club bank account
  • Notify members of fixtures and liaise with opposition  (Refer to the league handbook for contacts)

A Guide to Club Administration Booklet available from your County

A Guide to Managing in Grassroots Football
Becoming a Welfare Officer
Respect 15-16