Footballs on a pitch

Get Ready for the New Season

Where to find the answers to your grassroots football questions as you prepare for 2023-24

Got questions ahead of the new season? Here’s where to find the answers on everything from changes to the laws of the game through to discipline processes and more

With so many different things to get sorted as you prepare for a new football season, it can be hard to stay on top of all the details. To make life a little easier we’ve pulled together a number of useful resources for anyone looking to be up to date with the latest rules, regulations and guidance relating to grassroots football.

If you’ve got a burning question and don’t quite know where to look for the answer, the chances are it can probably be found following one of the links below. We'll keep updating this page as more information is released, so do keep checking back for updates.

Changes to the Laws of the Game

The FA have produced a summary of this year’s key law changes to help prepare clubs, managers, players, referees and spectators for the new season. 


The FA Handbook

The essential guide to the rules and regulations of football, The FA Handbook has been published every year since 1895, excluding the war years, and is an invaluable companion to people involved in football at all levels. 

Updated for 2023-24, any Rules and Regulations published in the electronic Handbook will now be in force, unless otherwise stated. The electronic version of the Handbook has a number of new features, including a search facility and the ability to generate a PDF of any section.


FA Technology Support

For even information and resources on how to get the most out of FA systems, from Full Time to the Matchday app take a look at the FA Grassroots Technology Support Portal and YouTube Channel which are packed with helpful tips and advice including useful videos that walk you through how to do many common tasks.


Grassroots Disciplinary Guide

The Grassroots Disciplinary Guide is an online interactive reference guide designed to aid Leagues, Clubs and Players throughout the season, covering teams at Step 5-6 of the NLS and below and teams at Tier 3 and below of the Women's Pyramid. 

It is a useful guide to explain the disciplinary process the changes that have taken place over the last few years - including match based discipline, temporary dismissals, sanction guidelines, competition specific cautions and mandatory minimum sanctions.


Sanction Guidelines

In an ever-changing world of football, it is important that The FA and County FAs move with the times to provide a safe, enjoyable environment for players, referees, and all participants alike, whilst maintaining the need for a fair and transparent disciplinary process for all involved. The aim of this publication is to provide guidance on the types of sanctions a Disciplinary Commission can impose, whilst also covering key topics such as Education Sanctions, Ground Bans and Mitigating/Aggravating factors. 

This document will serve as a useful guide for Participants to have an awareness of likely sanction should the case against them be found proven.


Points Deductions

The FA has introduced point deductions for teams across the grassroots game from the start of the 2023-24 season if their players or coaches commit repeated offences of serious misconduct. Point deductions will apply to clubs at Step 7 and below of the men’s game, and clubs across Tier 3 and below in the women’s pyramid, which commit cumulative incidents of serious misconduct, such as acts of discrimination and assault or attempted assault, physical contact or attempted physical contact against a match official.

Deductions will range from three to 12 points depending on the number of breaches within 12 months of the team’s first offence and severity of the case(s).

More About Points Deductions

Appeals Guidance

This document is designed to provide clubs and players with essential information when appealing a County FA decision to The FA. If a Club or individual wishes to appeal, we recommending reading through this document before submitting the intention to appeal.


Adding Suspension Matches

Please see a link below to guidance of how you can add players suspension matches to help ensure that players suspensions are cleared so they are eligible to play in upcoming fixtures.


Guidance on Dealing With Discrimination for Match Officials

Everyone at every level of the game should have an enjoyable experience participating in football. Referees play a vital role in this work, partly by sanctioning any discriminatory words and/or actions. But what exactly is discrimination, what actions should you take and where does your responsibility begin and end?


County Cup Competitions

With some County Cups kicking off a few weeks into the season we have gathered all the information you need to be ready to take part in this year’s Hertfordshire FA County Cups on a dedicated page which can be viewed via the link below. 


Of course if the answers you seek can’t be found above, we’re always here to help.

You can email or call us on 01462 677622.