First steps taken to grassroots football return

THE first tentative steps to a return for grassroots football have been taken.

Following the Government’s relaxation of Covid-19 restrictions from June 1, the Football Association issued further guidance to all grassroots football and informal football activity outside the professional game.

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.

The FA advised 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 impossible to maintain social distancing.

Football coaches can now undertake small group sessions up to six people, including the coach, but are reminded to follow the FA safeguarding policy when coaching/working with children.

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.

The FA added if an individual is symptomatic, living in a household with a possible Covid-19 infection or if you are classified as extremely vulnerable on health grounds, the guidance is that you should remain at home.

They added they continue to work closely with Department of Culture, Media and Sport and Sport England in order to set out good practice guidance for those responsible for delivering different aspects of grassroots football and they will provide further updates to as guidance information is shared.

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