1.A in these Rules:
Affiliated Association” means an Association accorded the status of an Affiliated Association under the rules of The FA.
AGM” shall mean the annual general meeting held in accordance with the constitution of the Competition.
Club” means a club for the time being in membership of the Competition.
Competition” means the
Essex Alliance Football League.
Competition Match” means any match played or to be played under the jurisdiction of the Competition.
Contract Player” means any Player (other than a Player on a Scholarship) who is eligible to play under a written contract of employment with a Club.
Deposit” means a sum of money deposited with the Competition as part of the requirements of membership of the Competition.
Fees Tariff” means a list of fees approved by the Clubs at a general meeting to be levied by the Management Committee for any matters for which fees are payable under the Rules, as set out at Schedule A.
Fines Tariff” means a list of fines approved by the Clubs at a general meeting to be levied by the Management Committee for any breach of the Rules, as set out at Schedule A.
Ground” means the ground on which the Club’s Team(s) plays its Competition Matches.
Management Committee” means in the case of a Competition which is an unincorporated association, the management committee elected to manage the running of the Competition and where the Competition is incorporated it means the Board of Directors appointed in accordance with the articles of association of that company.
Match Officials” means the referee, the assistant referees and any fourth official appointed to a Competition Match.
Non-Contract Player” means any Player (other than a Player on a Scholarship) who is eligible to play for a Club but has not entered into a written contract of employment.
Officer” means an individual who is appointed or elected to a position in a Club or Competition which requires that individual to make day to day decisions.
Participant” shall have the same meaning as set out in the rules of The FA from time to time.
Player” means any Contract Player, Non-Contract Player or other player who plays or who is eligible to play for a Club.
Player Registration System” means The FA system to register players as determined by The FA from time to time.
Playing Season” means the period between the date on which the first competitive fixture in the Competition is played each year until the date on which the last competitive fixture in the Competition is played.
Rules” means these rules under which the Competition is administered.
Sanctioning Authority” means the Essex County Football Association Limited.
Scholarship” means a Scholarship as defined in The FA rules.
Season” means the period of time between one AGM and the next AGM.
Secretary” means such person or persons appointed or elected to carry out the administration of the Competition.
SGM” means a special general meeting held in accordance with the constitution of the Competition.
Team” means a team affiliated to a Club, including where a Club provides more than one team in the Competition in accordance with the Rules.
Team Sheet” means a form provided by the Competition on which the names of the Players taking part in a Competition match are listed.
The FA” means The Football Association Limited.
Virtual Meetings” means meetings held electronically.
written” or “in writing” means the representation or reproduction of words or symbols or other information in a visible form by any method or combination of methods, whether sent or supplied in electronic form or otherwise.
1.B Unless stated otherwise, terms referring to natural persons are applicable to both genders. Any term in the singular applies to the plural and also the other way around.
2.A The Competition will be known as Essex Alliance Football League (or such other name as the Competition may adopt). The Clubs participating in the Competition must be members of the Competition. A Club which ceases to exist, or which ceases to be entitled to play in the Competition for any reason whatsoever shall automatically cease to be a member of the Competition.
2.B This Competition shall consist of not more than 100 Clubs approved by the Sanctioning Authority.
2.C The geographical area covered by the Competition membership shall be Metropolitan Essex and adjacent areas.
2.D The administration of the Competition under these Rules will be carried out by the Management Committee in accordance with the rules, regulations and policies of The FA.
2.E All Clubs shall adhere to the Rules. Every Club shall be deemed, as a member of the Competition to have accepted the Rules and to have agreed to abide by the decisions of the Management Committee in relation to them, subject to the provisions of Rule 7.
2.F The Rules are taken from the Standard Code of Rules (the “Standard Code”) determined by The FA from time to time. In the event of any omissions from the Standard Code then the requirements of the Standard Code shall be deemed to apply to the Competition.
1. All Clubs must be affiliated to an Affiliated Association and their names and particulars shall be returned annually by the appointed date in a manner prescribed by the Sanctioning Authority and must have a constitution approved by the Sanctioning Authority. Failure to comply with this Rule will result in a fine in accordance with the Fines Tariff.
2. This Competition shall apply annually for sanction to the Sanctioning Authority and the constituent Teams of Clubs may be grouped in divisions, each not exceeding 16 in number.
2.H Inclusivity and Non-discrimination
1. The Competition and each Club must be committed to promoting inclusivity and to eliminating all forms of discrimination and should abide and adhere to The FA Equality Policy and any legislative requirements (including those contained in the Equality Act 2010).
2. This Competition and each Club must make every effort to promote equality by treating people fairly and with respect, by recognising that inequalities may exist, by taking steps to address them and by providing access and opportunities for all members of the community, irrespective of age, gender, gender reassignment, sexual orientation, marital status, race, nationality, ethnic origin, colour, religion or belief, ability or disability or otherwise.
3. Any alleged breach of the Equality Act 2010 legislation must be referred to the appropriate Sanctioning Authority for investigation.
2.I Clubs must comply with the provisions of any initiatives of The FA which are adopted by the Competition including, but not limited to, England Football Accredited and RESPECT programmes. Failure to comply with this Rule will result in a fine in accordance with the Fines Tariff.
2.J All Participants shall abide by The Football Association Regulations for Safeguarding Children and Regulations for Safeguarding Adults at Risk as determined by The FA from time to time.
2.K Clubs shall not enter any of their Teams playing in the Competition in any other competitions (with the exception of FA and County FA Competitions) except with the written consent of the Management Committee. Failure to comply with this Rule will result in a fine in accordance with the Fines Tariff.
2.L At the AGM or an SGM called for the purpose, a majority of the delegates present shall have power to decide or adjust the constitution of the divisions at their discretion. When necessary this Rule shall take precedence over Rule 22.
2.M Only one Team from a Club shall be permitted to participate in a single division unless there is no viable alternative because of logistical issues and/or reasons linked to participation and geographical boundaries in which case the Competition will obtain the prior approval of the Sanctioning Authority. This Competition will ensure that, where permission is given, Teams from a Club operating in the same division are run as separate entities with no interchange of players other than by transfers of registration in accordance with these Rules.
3.A Any Club wishing to change its name must obtain permission from the Sanctioning Authority. In the event that permission is granted, the Club must advise the Competition Secretary. Failure to comply with this Rule will result in a fine in accordance with the Fines Tariff.
4.A Applications by Clubs for admission to the Competition or the entry of an additional Team(s) from the same Club must be made in writing to the Secretary and must be accompanied by an Entry Fee for each Team as set out in the Fees Tariff, which shall be returned in the event of non-election.
Applications, of which due notice has been given, will be received at the AGM or an SGM if confirmed by a majority of the accredited voting members present.
When Rule 22.B is applied, or a Team seeks a transfer or, is compulsorily transferred to another division, no Entry Fee shall be payable.
4.B The annual subscription shall be payable in accordance with the Fees Tariff for each Team payable at a date agreed at the AGM or set by the Competition.
This includes 25 registration forms, League handbooks and League Cup Competition entry fees.
4.C In the event of any issue concerning the membership of any Club with the Competition the Management Committee may require a Deposit to be paid (in accordance with the Fees Tariff) by or on behalf of the Club on such terms and for such period as it may in its entire discretion think fit. Failure to comply with this Rule will result in a fine in accordance with the Fines Tariff.
The Entry fee specified in Rule 4(A) shall become the deposit.
4.D A Club shall not participate in this Competition until the entry fee, annual subscription and deposit (if required) have been paid.
4.E Clubs must advise the Secretary annually in writing by 15th July of its Sanctioning Authority affiliation number for the forthcoming Playing Season. Clubs must advise the Secretary in writing, or on the prescribed form, of details of its headquarters, its Officers and any other information required by the Competition. Failure to comply with this Rule will result in a fine in accordance with the Fines Tariff.
5.A The Management Committee shall comprise the Officers of the Competition and up to 5 members who shall all be elected at the AGM.
The Officers of the Competition shall be the Chairman, Vice-Chairman, Treasurer, Secretary, Assistant Secretary, Registration Secretary, Results Secretary, Fixture Secretary, Referees Secretary, Disciplinary Secretary, Media Secretary, Minutes Secretary, League Development Officer and Senior Division Liaison Officer to be elected annually at the AGM. (N.B. Auditors/Verifiers are not Officers)
5.B Retiring Officers shall be eligible to become candidates for re-election without nomination provided that the Officer notifies the Secretary in writing not later than 1st May in each year. All other candidates for election as Officers of the Competition or members of the Management Committee shall be nominated to the Secretary in writing, signed by the secretaries of two Clubs, not later than 1st May in each year. Names of the candidates for election shall be circulated with the notice of the AGM. In the event of there being no nomination for any office by the date stated in the earlier part of this Rule, nominations may be received at the AGM.
5.C The Management Committee shall meet a minimum of twice a season or as and when required.
On receiving a requisition signed by two-thirds (2/3) of the members of the Management Committee the Secretary shall convene a meeting of the Management Committee.
5.D Except where otherwise mentioned all communications shall be addressed to the Secretary who shall conduct the correspondence of the Competition and keep a record of its proceedings.
5.E All communications received from Clubs must be conducted through their Officers and sent to the Secretary.
Failure to comply with this Rule will result in a fine in accordance with the Fines Tariff.
Each Club shall be responsible for ensuring sufficient postage is applied to all envelopes sent to the Competition. Clubs failing to supply the correct postage shall be fined.
5.F The Council of the League shall comprise of the Management Committee and one representative of each Member club. Management Committee members may represent their Club. The Council will meet on dates specified by the Management Committee.
All Clubs failing to be represented at Council meetings shall be fined and failure to be represented at two consecutive Council meetings without satisfactory reason being given, shall be further dealt with by the Management Committee with a further fine being imposed.
6.A The Management Committee may appoint sub-committees and delegate such of their powers as they deem necessary. The decisions of all sub-committees shall be reported to the Management Committee for ratification. The Management Committee shall have power to deal only with matters within the Competition and not for any matters of misconduct that are under the jurisdiction of The FA or Affiliated Association.
6.B Subject to the permission of the Sanctioning Authority having been obtained, the Management Committee may order a match or matches to be played each Season, the proceeds to be devoted to the funds of the Competition and, if necessary, may call on each Club to contribute equally such sums as may be necessary to meet any deficiency at the end of the Season.
6.C Each member of the Management Committee shall have the right to attend and vote at all Management Committee meetings and have one vote at all such meetings, but no member shall be allowed to vote on any matters directly relating to that member or to the Club so represented or where there may be a conflict of interest. (This shall also apply to the procedure of any sub-committee).
6.D In the event of the voting being equal on any matter, the Chair shall have a second or casting vote.
6.E The Management Committee shall have powers to apply, act upon and enforce these Rules and shall also have jurisdiction over all matters affecting the Competition. Any action by the Competition must be taken within 28 days of the Competition being notified.
With the exception of Rules 6.J, 8.H, and 9, for all alleged breaches of a Rule the Management Committee shall issue a formal written charge to the Club concerned. The Club charged shall be given 7 days from the date of notification of the charge to reply. In such reply a Club may:
(i) Accept the charge and/or submit in writing a case of mitigation for consideration by the Management Committee; or
(ii) Accept the charge and notify the Competition Secretary that it wishes to put its case of mitigation at a hearing before the Management Committee; or
(iii) Deny the charge and submit in writing supporting evidence for consideration by the Management Committee; or
(iv) Deny the charge and notify the Competition Secretary that it wishes to have a hearing before the Management Committee.
Where the Club charged fails to respond within 7 days, the Management Committee shall determine the charge in such manner and upon such evidence as it considers appropriate.
Having considered the reply of the Club (whether in writing or at a hearing), the Management Committee shall make its decision and, in the event that the charge is accepted or proven, decide on the appropriate penalty (with reference to the Fines Tariff where applicable).
Where required, hearings shall take place as soon as reasonably practicable following receipt of the reply of the Club as more fully set out above.
With the exception of Teams playing at Regional NLS Feeder League of the National League System, the maximum fine permitted for any breach of a Rule is £250 and, when setting any fine, the Management Committee must ensure that the penalty is proportional to the offence, taking into account any mitigating circumstances.
The maximum fine permitted for a breach of a Rule by a Team playing at Regional NLS Feeder League level is £500.
No Participant under the age of 18 can be fined.
All breaches of the Laws of the Game, or the Rules and Regulations of The FA shall be dealt with in accordance with FA Rules by the appropriate sanctioning Association.
6.F All decisions of the Management Committee shall be binding subject to the right of appeal in accordance with Rule 7.
Decisions of the Management Committee must be notified in writing to those concerned within 7 days.
6.G A minimum of 50% of its members shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business by the Management Committee or any of its sub-committees.
6.H The Management Committee, as it may deem necessary, shall have power to fill any vacancies that may occur in their number.
6.I A Club must comply with an order or instruction of the Management Committee and must attend to the business and/or the correspondence of the Competition to the satisfaction of the Management Committee. Failure to comply with this Rule will result in a fine in accordance with the Fines Tariff.
6.J Subject to a Club’s right of appeal in accordance with Rule 7 below, all fines and charges must be paid within 14 days of the date of notification of the decision. Any Club failing to do so will be fined in accordance with the Fines Tariff. Further failure to pay the fine including the additional fine within a further 14 days will result in fixtures being withdrawn until such time as the outstanding fines are paid.
6.K A member of the Management Committee appointed by the Competition to attend a meeting or Competition Match may have any reasonable expenses incurred refunded by the Competition.
6.L The Management Committee shall have the power to fill any vacancy that may occur in the membership of the Competition between the AGM or SGM called to decide the constitution and the commencement of the Playing Season, subject to the provisions of the National League System Regulations (which shall take precedence if applicable).
6.M The business of the Competition as determined by the Management Committee may be transacted by electronic mail or facsimile.
1. All questions of eligibility, qualification of Players or interpretations of the Rules shall be referred to the Management Committee or a sub-committee duly appointed by the Management Committee.
2. Objections relevant to the dimensions of the pitch, goals, flag posts or other facilities will not be entertained by the Management Committee unless a protest is lodged with the referee prior to the commencement of the Match.
7.B Except in cases where the Management Committee decide that there are special circumstances, protests and complaints (which must contain full particulars of the grounds upon which they are founded) must be lodged with the Secretary within 3 days (excluding Sundays) of the Competition Match or occurrence to which they refer. A protest or complaint shall not be withdrawn except by permission of the Management Committee. A member of the Management Committee who is a member of any Club involved shall not be present (except as a witness or representative of his Club) when such protest or complaint is being determined.
7.C No protest of whatever kind shall be considered by the Management Committee unless the complaining Club shall have deposited with the Secretary a sum in accordance with the Fees Tariff. This may be forfeited in whole or in part in the event of the complaining or protesting Club losing its case. The Competition shall have power to order the defaulting Club or the Club making a losing or frivolous protest or complaint to pay the expenses of the inquiry or to order that the costs to be shared by the parties.
7.D All parties to a protest or complaint must receive a copy of the submission and must be afforded an opportunity to make a statement at least 7 days before the protest or complaint being heard.
1. All parties must have received a minimum of 7 days’ notice of the hearing should they be instructed to attend.
2. Should a Club elect to state its case in person then it should indicate such when forwarding the written response.
7.E The Management Committee shall also have power to compel any party to the protest to pay such expenses as the Management Committee shall direct.
7.F Any appeal against a decision of the Management Committee must be lodged with the Sanctioning Authority within 14 days of the posting of the written notification of the decision causing the appeal, accompanied by a fee of £35.00, which may be forfeited in the event of the appeal not being upheld. A copy of the appeal must also be sent to the Secretary. The procedure for the appeal shall be determined by the Sanctioning Authority, and the Sanctioning Authority may (but is not obliged to):
1. invite submissions by the parties involved;
2. convene a hearing to hear the appeal;
3. permit new evidence; or
4. impose appropriate deadlines.
Any appeal shall not involve a rehearing of the evidence considered by the Management Committee.
7.G No appeal can be lodged against a decision taken at an AGM or SGM unless this is on the ground of unconstitutional conduct.
7.H All protests, claims or complaints relating to these Rules and appeals arising from a Player’s contract shall be heard and determined by the Management Committee, or a sub-committee duly appointed by the Management Committee. The Clubs or Players protesting, appealing, claiming or complaining must send a copy of such protest, appeal, claim or complaint and deposit a fee (as set out in the Fees Tariff) which shall be forfeited in the event of the protest, appeal, claim or complaint not being upheld, and in these circumstances may, in addition, be ordered to pay the costs at the direction of the Management Committee.
All such protests, claims, complaints and appeals must be received in writing by the Secretary within 14 days of the event or decision causing any of these to be submitted.
8.A The AGM shall be held not later than 30th June in each year. At this meeting the following business shall be transacted provided that at least 75% of members are present and entitled to vote:-
1. Confirm the minutes of the last AGM.
2. Adopt the annual report, balance sheet and statement of accounts from the previous season or accounting period.
3. Election of Clubs to fill vacancies.
4. Constitution of the Competition for the ensuing Season.
5. Election of Competition Officers and Management Committee members.
6. Appointment of auditors/verifiers.
7. Alteration of Rules, if any (see Rule 14)
8. Agree the date for the beginning of the Playing Season and kick-off times applicable to the Competition.
9. Agree the date for the end of the Playing Season (save for Regional NLS Feeder League which shall be determined by The FA)
10. Other business of which due notice shall have been given and accepted by the Chair as being relevant to an AGM.
8.B A copy of the duly audited/verified balance sheet, statement of accounts and agenda shall be forwarded to each Club at least 14 days prior to the meeting, together with any proposed Rule changes.
8.C A signed copy of the duly audited/verified balance sheet and statement of accounts shall be sent to the Sanctioning Authority within 14 days of its adoption by the AGM
8.D Each Club shall be empowered to send two delegates to an AGM. Each Club shall be entitled to one vote only. Fourteen days’ notice shall be given of any AGM.
8.E Clubs who have withdrawn their membership of the Competition during the Playing Season being concluded or who are not continuing membership shall be entitled to attend but shall vote only on matters relating to the Season being concluded.
8.F All voting shall be conducted by a show of hands or count of email or virtual responses (for virtual meetings) unless a ballot be demanded by at least 50% of the delegates qualified to vote or the Chair so decides.
8.G No individual shall be entitled to vote on behalf of more than one Club.
8.H Any continuing Club must be represented at the AGM. Failure to comply with this Rule will result in a fine in accordance with the Fines Tariff.
8.I Officers of the Competition and Management Committee members shall be entitled to attend and vote at an AGM but cannot also cast a vote on behalf of a club (See Rule 8.G).
8.J Where a Competition is an incorporated entity, the Officers of the Competition shall ensure that the Articles of Association of the Competition are consistent with the requirements of these Rules.
9.A On receiving a requisition signed by two-thirds (2/3) of the Clubs in membership the Secretary shall call an SGM.
9.B The Management Committee may call an SGM at any time.
9.C At least 7 days’ notice shall be given of a meeting under this Rule, together with an agenda of the business to be transacted at such meeting.
9.D Each Club shall be empowered to send two delegates to all SGMs. Each Club shall be entitled to one vote only.
9.E Any Club failing to be represented at an SGM shall be fined in accordance with the Fines Tariff.
9.F Officers of the Competition and Management Committee members shall be entitled to attend and vote at all SGMs but cannot also cast a vote on behalf of a club (See Rule 9.D).
10. Each Club shall complete and sign the following agreement which shall be deposited with the Competition together with the application for membership for the coming Season.
“We, [name] of [address] (Chair/Director) and [name] of [address] (Secretary/Director) of [ ] Football Club (Limited) have been provided with a copy of the Rules and Regulations of the Essex Alliance Football League Competition and do hereby agree for and on behalf of the said Club, if elected or accepted into membership, to conform to those Rules and Regulations and to accept, abide by and implement the decisions of the Management Committee of the Competition, subject to the right of appeal in accordance with Rule 7.”
The agreement shall be signed by the Club Chair and Secretary (where a Club is an unincorporated association) or by two directors of the Club (where a Club is an incorporated entity).
Any change of Chair, Secretary or Directors of the Club as named on the above agreement must be notified to the County Football Association to which the Club is sanctioned and to the Secretary of this Competition.
Failure to comply with this Rule will result in a fine in accordance with the Fines Tariff.
11.A Any Club intending, or having a provisional intention, to withdraw a Team from the Competition on completion of its fixtures and fulfilment of all other obligations to the Competition must notify the Secretary in writing of such intention by 31st March each season. This does not apply to a Club moving in accordance with Rule 22.B. Failure to comply with this Rule will result in a fine in accordance with the Fines Tariff.
All Clubs wishing to remain in membership of the Competition for the following Season must confirm their intention to do so, in writing, to the Secretary by 31st March.
11.B The Management Committee shall have the discretion to deal with a Team being unable to start or complete its fixtures for a Playing Season, including, but not limited to, issuing a fine in accordance with the Fines Tariff.
11.C Notwithstanding the powers of the Management Committee pursuant to Rule 6.I, in the event of a Club failing to discharge all its financial obligations to the Competition in excess of £50, the Management Committee shall be empowered to refer the debt under The FA Football Debt Recovery provisions.
12.A At the AGM or SGM called for the purpose in accordance with the provisions of Rule 9, notice of motion having been duly circulated on the agenda by direction of the Management Committee, the accredited delegates present shall have the power to: (i) remove a member of the Management Committee from office; (ii) exclude any Club or Team from membership, both of which must be supported by more than two thirds (2/3) of those present and voting. Voting on this point shall be conducted by ballot. A member of the Management Committee or Club which is the subject of the vote being taken shall be excluded from voting.
12.B At the AGM, or at an SGM called for the purpose in accordance with the provisions of Rule 9, the accredited delegates present shall have the power to exclude from further participation in the Competition any Club whose conduct has, in their opinion, been undesirable, provided this is supported by more than two-thirds (2/3) of those present and voting. Voting on this point shall be conducted by ballot. A Club whose conduct is the subject of the vote being taken shall be excluded from voting.
12.C Any Officer or member of a Club found guilty of either a breach of Rule, other than field offences, or of inducing or attempting to induce a Player or Players of another Club in the Competition to join them shall be liable to such penalty as a General Meeting or Management Committee may decide, and their Club shall also be liable to expulsion in accordance with the provisions of 12.A and/or 12.B of this Rule.
13.A The following agreement shall be signed on behalf of the winners of the cup or trophy: -
“We (A) (name) and (B) (name), the Chair and Secretary of FC (Limited), members of and representing the Club, having been declared winners of cup or trophy, and the cup or trophy having been delivered to us by the Competition, do hereby on behalf of the Club jointly and severally agree to return the cup or trophy to the Competition Secretary on or before 28th February. If the cup or trophy is lost or damaged whilst under our care, we agree to refund to the Competition the amount of its current value or the cost of its thorough repair.”
Failure to comply will result in a fine in accordance with the Fines Tariff.
Any Club failing to return a Trophy in a clean state and ready for re-presentation shall be fined.
Any Club leaving the League before 30th September shall return any Cup or Trophy held by them at the time of their resignation.
13.B At the close of each Competition awards may/shall be made to the winners and runners-up if the funds of the Competition permit.
14.A Alterations, for which consent has been given by the Sanctioning Authority, shall be made to these Rules only at the AGM or at an SGM specially convened for the purpose called in accordance with Rule 9. Any alteration made during the Playing Season to these Rules shall not take effect until the following Playing Season except in exceptional circumstances and approved by Sanctioning Authority and The FA.
14.B Notice of proposed alterations to be considered at the AGM shall be submitted to the Secretary by 31st March in each year. The proposals, together with any proposals by the Management Committee, shall be circulated to the Clubs by 30th April and any amendments to these proposals shall be submitted to the Secretary by 15th May. The proposals and proposed amendments to these proposals shall be circulated to Clubs with the notice of the AGM. A proposal to change a Rule shall be carried if a majority of those present, entitled to vote and voting are in favour.
14.C A copy of the proposed alterations to Rules to be considered at the AGM or SGM shall be submitted to the Sanctioning Authority at least 28 days prior to the date of the meeting.
15.A The Management Committee shall determine with which bank or other financial institution the funds of the Competition will be lodged.
15.B All expenditure in excess of £500.00 shall be approved by the Management Committee. Cheques shall be signed by at least two Officers nominated by the Management Committee.
15.C The financial year of the Competition will end on 31st May.
15.D The accounting records, or a certified balance sheet, of a Competition shall be prepared and shall be verified annually by a suitably qualified person(s) who shall be appointed at the AGM.
15.E Honoraria, if paid, must be agreed at the AGM and relate to the season just concluded. The Management Committee shall recommend which Officers may receive honoraria and the level of payment. All the above to be detailed on the AGM paperwork under “Any other business” (Rule 8.A.10).
16.A All Clubs must have valid public liability insurance cover for a minimum of ten million pounds (£10,000,000) at all times.
16.B All Clubs must have valid personal accident cover for all Players registered with them from time to time. The Players’ personal accident insurance cover must be in place prior to the Club taking part in any Competition Match and shall be at least equal to the minimum recommended cover determined from time to time by the Sanctioning Authority. In instances where The FA is the Sanctioning Authority, the minimum recommended cover will be the cover required by the Affiliated Association to which a Club affiliates.
Failure to comply with Rule 16.A or 16.B will result in a fine in accordance with the Fines Tariff.
17.A Dissolution of the Competition shall be by resolution approved at an SGM by a majority of three quarters (3/4) of the members present and shall take effect from the date of the relevant SGM.
17.B In the event of the dissolution of the Competition, the members of the Management Committee are responsible for the winding up of the assets and liabilities of the Competition.
17.C The Management Committee shall deal with any surplus assets as follows:
1. Any surplus assets, save for a trophy or any other presentation, remaining after the discharge of the debts and liabilities of the Competition shall be transferred only to another Competition or Essex County Football Association or the Essex County Football Association Benevolent Fund or to such other charitable or benevolent object in the locality of the Competition as determined by resolution at or before the time of winding up, and approved in writing by the Essex County Football Association.
2. If a Competition is discontinued for any reason a trophy or any other presentation shall be returned to the donor if the conditions attached to it so provide or, if not, dealt with as the Essex County Football Association may decide.
18.A A Player is one who, being in all other respects eligible, has:
1. registered through the Player Registration System and received approval from the Competition;
2. signed a fully and correctly completed Competition registration form in ink on a match day prior to playing which is countersigned by an Officer of the Club and witnessed by an Officer of the opposing Club and submitted to the Competition within two days (Sundays excluded) subsequent to the Competition Match. The Player shall not play again on a subsequent match day until the Club has registered the player through The FA Player Registration System and is in possession of the approval from the Competition. A maximum of two Players may be registered in this manner.
Any registration that is not fully and correctly completed will be returned to the Club unprocessed and the player classed as unregistered. If a Club attempts to register a player via the Player Registration System but does not fully and correctly complete the necessary information via the Player Registration System, the registration will not be processed.
For Clubs registering Players under Rule 18.A.2, registration forms will be provided in a format to be determined by the Competition. For Clubs registering Players by the Player Registration System, Clubs must access the Player Registration System in order to complete the registration process.
Accompanying the said Registration Forms must be a recent passport approved photograph. Hats must not be worn when photo is taken.
Failure to comply with this Rule will result in a fine in accordance with the Fines Tariff.
1. Contract players are not permitted in this Competition with the exception of those Players who are registered under Contract with the same Club who have a team operating at Steps 1 to 6 of the National League System.
2. It is the responsibility of each Club to ensure that any Player registered to the Club has, where necessary, the required International Transfer Certificate. Clearance is required for any Player aged 10 and over crossing borders including Wales, Scotland and Ireland.
3. Each Club must have at least 11 Players per team registered 3 days before the start of each Playing Season. Failure to comply with this Rule will result in a fine in accordance with the Fines Tariff.
4. In the event of a Non-Contract Player changing their status to that of a Contract Player with the same Club, or with a Club in another Competition their registration as a Non-Contract Player will automatically be cancelled and declared void unless the Club conforms to the exception detailed in Rule 18.B.1.
18.C A Player that owes a Football Debt (as defined under the Football Debt Recovery Regulations) shall be permitted to register for a Club but will be suspended from football activities if the Player does not comply with the terms of the Football Debt Recovery Regulations in respect of that Football Debt.
18.D A fee as set out in the Fees Tariff shall be paid by each Club/Team for each Player registered in excess of the allowance of 25 per team.
18.E The Management Committee shall decide all registration disputes.
In the event of a player signing a registration form or having a registration submitted for more than one Club, priority of registration shall decide for which Club the Player shall be registered. The Registrations Secretary shall notify the Club last applying to register the player of the fact of the previous registration.
18.F It shall be a breach of Rule for a Player to: -
1. Play for more than one Club in the Competition in the same Playing Season without first being transferred.
2. Having registered for one Club in the Competition, register for another Club in the Competition in that Playing Season except for the purpose of a transfer or where the Competition adopts Rule 18.P.
3. Submit a signed registration form as per Rule 18.A.2 or submit a registration through the Player Registration System that the Player had wilfully neglected to accurately or fully complete.
Failure to comply with this Rule will result in a fine in accordance with the Fines Tariff.
1. The Management Committee shall have the power to accept the registration of any Player subject to the provisions of Rules 18.G.2 and 18.G.3 below.
2. The Management Committee shall have power to refuse, cancel or suspend the registration of any Player or may fine any Player, at their discretion (in accordance with the Fines Tariff) who has been charged and found guilty of registration irregularities (subject to Rule 7).
3. The Management Committee shall have power to make application to refuse or cancel the registration of any Player charged and found guilty of undesirable conduct (subject to Rule 7) subject to the right of appeal to the Sanctioning Authority. Application should be made to the parent County of the Club the Player is registered or intending to be registered with.
Undesirable conduct shall mean an incident of repeated proven misconduct, which may deter a Participant from being involved in this Competition.
4. A Player who has previously had a registration removed in accordance with Rule 18.G.3 but has a registration accepted at the expiry of exclusion will be considered to be under a probationary period of 12 months. Whilst under a probationary period, should the Player commit a further act of proven misconduct under the jurisdiction of the Competition, (excluding standard dismissals), the Competition may consider a further charge of bringing the Competition into disrepute.
(Note: Action under Rule 18.G.3 shall not be taken against a Player for misconduct until the matter has been dealt with by the Sanctioning Authority, and then only in cases of the Player bringing the Competition into disrepute and will in any event be subject to an appeal to the Sanctioning Authority or The FA. All decisions must include the period of restriction. For the purpose of this Rule, bringing the Competition into disrepute can only be considered where the Player has received in excess of 112 days’ suspension, or 10 matches in match-based discipline, in any competition (and is not restricted to the Competition) in a period of two years or less from the date of the first offence.)
18.H Subject to compliance with FA Rule C when a Club wishes to register a player who is already registered with another club it shall submit a transfer notification to the Competition via the Player Registration System. A fee as set out in the Fees Tariff will/may be required. Such transfer shall be referred by the Competition to the club for which the player is registered. Should this club object to the transfer it should state its objections in writing to the Competition and to the player concerned within 3 days of receipt of the notification. Upon receipt of the club’s consent, or upon its failure to give written objection within 3 days, the Secretary may, on behalf of the Management Committee, transfer the player who shall be deemed eligible to play for the new Club from such date or seven days after receipt of such transfer.
In the event of an objection to a transfer the matter shall be referred to the Management Committee for a decision.
18.I A Player may not be registered for a Club nor transferred to another Club in the Competition after 31st March except by special permission of the Management Committee.
18.J Registrations are valid for one Playing Season only.
18.K A Player shall not be eligible to play for a Team in any special championship, promotion or relegation deciding Competition Match (as specified in Rule 22.A) unless the Player has played 4 Competition Matches for that Team in the current Playing Season.
18.L A Team shall not include more than 2 Players who have taken part in four or more senior Competition Matches during the current Playing Season unless a period of 21 days has elapsed since they last played.
For the purpose of this Rule a senior competition is Step 6 and above of the National League System.
Failure to comply with this Rule will result in a fine in accordance with the Fines Tariff.
1. Subject to Rule 18.M.2, any Club found to have played an ineligible Player in a Competition Match or Matches where points are awarded shall have the points gained from that Competition Match deducted from its record, up to a maximum of 12 points, and have levied upon it a fine (in accordance with the Fines Tariff).
2. The Management Committee may vary the sanction as relates to the deduction of points set out at Rule 18.M.1 only in circumstances where the ineligibility is due to the failure to obtain an International Transfer Certificate or where the ineligibility is related to the Player’s status.
3. Where a Club is found to have played an ineligible Player in accordance with Rule 18.M.1 above, the Management Committee may also, at its discretion:
a) Award the points available in the Competition Match in question to the opponents, subject to the Competition Match not being ordered to be replayed; or
b) Levy penalty points against the Club in default; or
c) Order that such Competition Match or Matches be replayed (on such terms as are decided by the Management Committee).
18.N The following clause applies to Competitions involving Players in full-time secondary education: -
1. Priority must be given at all times to activities of schools and school organisations. Failure to comply with this Rule will result in a fine in accordance with the Fines Tariff.
2. The availability of children and young people must be cleared with the Head Teachers or Principals (except for Sunday leagues competitions).
3. To play open age football the player must have achieved the age of 16.
18.O A player who has taken part in 4 or more league and/or cup fixtures within the League for a team during the current season shall be deemed a qualified player to that team. A Club’s second team shall not include more than 2 qualified first team players in any one match. A Club’s third team shall not include any first team qualified players and no more than 2 qualified second team players in any one match.
18.P Not in use.
18.Q Checks on players' eligibility may be carried out by any League Officer who attends any League controlled match. Players and substitutes of each Club shall be requested to provide names, date of births and signatures of all players that took part in the match. These names and signatures shall then be submitted to the League Registration Secretary for authentication. Clubs shall be responsible for their players' actions, and any refusal to comply when requested will deem the offending 'club member' guilty of misconduct, and they shall be dealt with by the Management Committee as if they had played an unregistered player. Any irregularity found by the League Registration Secretary in checking the submitted names and signatures shall be dealt with by the League Management Committee as provided by the Rules of this Competition.
18.R In the event of a Club or Official questioning the individual identity of a player of the opposing team, they shall either at half time or immediately after the match request that player to provide his name, date of birth and signature. Clubs shall be responsible for their players’ actions and any refusal to complete the form, when requested, will deem the offending player and Club guilty of misconduct. These names and signatures shall be submitted to the League Secretary as part of any protest (Rule 7) for adjudication by the League Management Committee. If any irregularity is found, the matter will be dealt with by the League Management Committee as provided by the Rules of this Competition on player eligibility (Rule 18).
19.A Every Team must register the colour of its shirts and shorts with the Secretary by 15th July and the Competition Secretary shall decide as to their suitability.
19.B Any Team changing its colours during the Playing Season must notify the Competition Secretary immediately.
19.C Goalkeepers must wear colours which distinguish them from all other Players and the Match Officials.
19.D No Player, including the goalkeeper, shall be permitted to wear black or very dark shirts.
19.E Any Team not being able to play in its normal colours as registered with the Competition shall notify its opponents of the colours in which they will play (including the colours of the goalkeeper’s jersey) at least 5 days before the Competition Match.
19.F If, in the opinion of the referee, two Teams have the same or similar colours, the away Team shall make the change. Should a Team delay the scheduled time of kick off for a Competition Match by not having a change of colours they will be fined in accordance with the Fines Tariff.
19.G Shirts must all be numbered and no two shirts shall have the same number, failing which a fine will be levied in accordance with the Fines Tariff.
19.H The Secretary of the Competition may request shirts to be submitted if complaints are received as to lack of distinguishing colours, and the Management Committee may refuse to permit any shirts or shorts as they think fit.
20.A All Competition Matches shall be played in accordance with the Laws of the Game as determined by the International Football Association Board.
Clubs must take all reasonable precautions to keep their Grounds in a playable condition. All Competition Matches shall be played on pitches deemed suitable by the Management Committee. If through any fault of the home Team a match has to be replayed, the Management Committee shall have power to order the venue to be changed.
The Management Committee shall have power to decide whether a pitch and/or facilities are suitable for Competition Matches and to order the Club concerned to play its Competition Match(es) on another ground.
Football Turf Pitches (3G) are allowed in this Competition provided they meet the required performance standards and are listed on the FA’s Register of Football Turf Pitches. All Football Turf Pitches used must be tested (by a FIFA accredited test institute) every three years and the results passed to The FA. The FA will give a decision on the suitability for use and add the pitch to the Register.
The home Club is also responsible for advising Participants of footwear requirements when confirming match arrangements in accordance with Rule 20.C.
Within the National League System (“NLS”) and Regional NLS Feeder Leagues, all Competition Matches shall have a duration of 90 minutes. All other Competition Matches shall have duration of 90 minutes unless a shorter time (not less than sixty (60) minutes) is mutually arranged by the two Clubs in consultation with the referee prior to the commencement of the match, and in any event shall be of equal halves. Two matches involving the same two Teams can be played on the same day providing the total playing time is not more than 120 minutes.
The times of kick-off shall be agreed at the AGM and can only be altered by the mutual consent of the two competing Clubs and the Competition. Any Club failing to commence at the appointed time may be fined or be otherwise dealt with as the Management Committee may determine.
Referees must order matches to commence at the appointed time and must report all late starts to the Competition.
The home Team must provide goal nets, corner flags and at least two footballs fit for play and the referee shall make a report to the Competition if not provided. Failure to comply with this Rule will result in a fine in accordance with the Fines Tariff.
Goal nets must be suitably anchored to the ground. Regulation corner posts must be used. Clubs in default shall be fined.
No overhead netting is allowed for 9v9 and 11v11 affiliated matches.
Regional NLS Feeder Leagues: Overhead wires used to support pitch divider netting are removed for all affiliated matches in the NLS and at Regional NLS Feeder League level.
For those leagues which are not Regional NLS Feeder Leagues: Overhead wires used to support pitch divider netting are ideally removed for affiliated matches but if they cannot be removed then discretion is given to the match official to restart the match in accordance with the laws of the game.
20.B Except by permission of the Management Committee all Competition Matches must be played on the dates originally agreed but priority shall be given to The FA and parent County Association Cup Competitions. All other matches must be considered secondary. Clubs may mutually agree to bring forward a Competition match with the consent of the Competition Fixtures Secretary. Failure to comply with this Rule will result in a fine in accordance with the Fines Tariff.
In the case of a revised fixture date, the Clubs must be given by the Competition 5 clear days’ notice of the match (unless otherwise mutually agreed).
The Fixture Secretary can determine ‘double headers’ shall be played. ‘Double headers’ are two League matches each of 60 minutes duration between the same opponents, played on the same date, at the same venue. The matches will be regarded as separate matches producing the season’s two League results between the teams involved. The pitch and Referee’s fee and expenses will be shared 50% each by the teams involved. The team whose home pitch is used shall collect the monies due and pay the Referee.
Clubs shall supply the Fixture Secretary with a list of dates for fixtures on a form supplied by the League. The form to be returned completed to the Fixture Secretary on or before 15th July. Failure to return this form will result in a fine.
Any Club requesting a postponement of a fixture or unable to play a fixture on a date shown on the form submitted must seek approval from the Fixture Secretary at least 28 days before the date on which the postponement is required. Failure to do so will be dealt with under Rule 20(E). Clubs participating within National League System divisions shall only be granted such request in very exceptional circumstances.
20.C An Officer of the home Club must give notice of full particulars of the location of, and access to, the Ground and time of kick-off to the Match Officials and an Officer of the opposing Club at least 5 clear days prior to the playing of the match. If not so provided, the away Club and Match Officials shall seek such details and report the circumstances to the Competition. Failure to comply with this Rule will result in a fine in accordance with the Fines Tariff.
20.D In accordance with the Laws of the Game, the minimum number of Players which will constitute a Team for a Competition Match is 7.
1. Home and away matches shall be played. In the event of a Club failing to keep its engagement the Management Committee shall have power to impose a fine (in accordance with the Fines Tariff), deduct points from the defaulting Club, award the points from the Competition Match in question to the opponents, order the defaulting Club to pay any reasonable expenses incurred by the opponents or otherwise deal with them except by the award of goals. Notwithstanding the foregoing home and away provision, the Management Committee shall have power to order a Competition Match to be played on a neutral ground or on the opponent’s Ground if they are satisfied that such action is warranted by the circumstances.
2. Any Club with more than one Team in the Competition shall always fulfil its fixture, within the Competition, in the following order of precedence: - First Team, Reserve Team, A Team.
Failure to comply with this Rule will result in a fine in accordance with the Fines Tariff.
3. Any Club unable to fulfil a fixture or where a Competition Match has been postponed for any reason must, without delay, give notice to the Competition Fixtures Secretary, Referees Appointments Secretary, the secretary of the opposing Club and the Match Officials.
Failure to comply with this Rule will result in a fine in accordance with the Fines Tariff.
4. In the event of a Competition Match not being played or being abandoned owing to causes over which neither Club has control, it should be played in its entirety on a date to be mutually agreed by the two Clubs and approved by the Competition. Failing such agreement and notification to the Fixtures Secretary within 7 days the Competition shall have the power to order the Match to be played on or before a given date. Where it is to the advantage of the Competition, the Management Committee shall also be empowered to order the score at the time of an abandonment to stand.
5. The Management Committee shall review all Competition Matches abandoned in cases where it is consequent upon the conduct of either or both Teams. Where it is to the advantage of the Competition and does no injustice to either Club, the Management Committee shall order the score at the time of the abandonment to stand. In all cases where the Management Committee are satisfied that a Match was abandoned owing to the conduct of one Team or its Club member(s) they shall award the points for the Match to the opponent. In cases where a Match has been abandoned owing to the conduct of both Teams or their Club member(s), the Management Committee shall rule that neither Team will be awarded any points for that Match and it shall not be replayed. No fine(s) can be applied by the Management Committee for an abandoned Match.
6. The Management Committee shall review any Match that has taken place where either or both Teams were under a suspension imposed upon them by The FA or Affiliated Association. In each case the Team that was under suspension would be dealt with in the same manner as if they had participated with ineligible players in accordance with Rule 18.M above. Where both Teams were under suspension the game must be declared null and void and shall not be replayed.
20.F A Club may at its discretion and in accordance with the Laws of the Game use substitute Players in any Competition Match. A Team may name up to 5 substitute Players of whom not more than 5 may be used.
A Player who has been substituted becomes a substitute and may replace a Player at any time subject to the substitution being carried out in accordance with Law 3 of the Laws of Association Football.
The referee and a representative of the opposing Club shall be informed of the names of the Players taking part in the Match (including the substitutes) not later than 5 minutes before the start of the Competition Match and a Player not so named may not take part in that Competition Match.
A Player who has been named as a substitute before the start of the Competition Match but does not actually play in that game shall not be considered to have been a Player in that Competition Match within the meaning of Rule 18 of this Competition.
20.G The half time interval shall be of 10 minutes’ duration, but it shall not exceed 15 minutes. The half time interval may only be altered with the consent of the referee.
20.H The Teams taking part in a Competition Match shall identify a Team captain who may wear an armband and shall have a responsibility to offer support in the management of the on-field discipline of their teammates. Failure to comply with this Rule will result in a fine in accordance with the Fines Tariff.
20.J Clubs are required to complete the multi-coloured Team Sheet showing Surname, Forename and shirt number, in Block Capitals of participating players and substitutes.
PRIOR TO THE MATCH:
(BOTH TEAMS) PINK COPY to your opponents, and WHITE COPY to the referee at least 5 minutes before the scheduled kick-off. This Team Sheet shall also show the name of the referee. Defaulting Clubs shall be reported and shall be fined for each separate offence. (Note: BLUE COPY is for your records).
Teams are required to retain copies of the Team Sheets they were given prior to the match for a period of 28 days and, if requested, send this form by either e-mail or post to the Registration Secretary.
20.K In National League System divisions, only named substitutes and Officials of the club are allowed within the dug-out or technical area during the match. Only two persons are allowed to stand in the technical area at any one time and then only to convey instructions to their team. If there is no dug-out or technical area then all persons must stay behind the barrier, which must fully enclose the playing area, throughout the match. Referees are asked to report any breach of the above on their Result Sheet. Failure to comply with ground grading requirements shall result in a fine in accordance with the Fines Tariff.
20.L In National League System divisions only, admission to fixtures shall only be charged where pay box and/or turnstile facilities exist at venues with FA ground grade H or above. The maximum admission charge is £5. Admission charges must be publicised and made aware to visiting clubs/officials no less than 5 days before the fixture with provision for complimentary admission for authorised officials and press. Failure to comply will result in a fine in accordance with the Fines Tariff.
21.A The Competition Registration Secretary must receive within 4 days of the date played, the result of each Competition Match in the prescribed manner. This must include the forename(s) and surname of the Team Players (in block letters) and also the referee markings required by Rule 23, or any other information required by the Competition. Failure to comply with this Rule will result in a fine in accordance with the Fines Tariff.
21.B The Home Club shall notify the result of each Competition Match to the Results Secretary by 6 p.m. For evening fixtures, the Home Club shall notify the result of each match to the Results Secretary by midday of the following day. Failure to comply with this Rule will result in a fine in accordance with the Fines Tariff.
This includes all outside Competitions such as County Cup and Charity Cup matches, whether playing Home or Away, and any unplayed games.
21.C The match result notification, correctly completed, shall be signed by an Officer of the Team, or as prescribed by the Competition. Failure to comply with this Rule will result in a fine in accordance with the Fines Tariff.
22.A Team rankings within the Competition will be decided by points with three points to be awarded for a win and one point for a drawn Competition Match. The Teams gaining the highest number of points in their respective divisions at the end of the Playing Season shall be adjudged the winners. Competition Matches must not be played for double points.
In the event of two or more Teams being equal on points at the end of the Playing Season, rankings shall be determined by goal difference (where the goals scored against each Team shall be deducted from the goals scored by that Team and the Team with the most favourable goal difference shall be placed highest).
In the event of two or more Teams still being equal, the Team which has scored the most goals during the Playing Season shall be placed highest.
In the event of two or more Teams still being equal, the Team that has won the most matches during the Playing Season shall be placed highest.
In the event of two or more Teams still being equal, the Team which has the better playing record against the other Team in their head to head Competition Matches during the Playing Season will be placed highest.
If the records of two or more Teams are still equal and it is necessary for any reason to determine the position of each then the Teams affected shall play a deciding match or matches under conditions as determined by the Management Committee.
When more than one division operates at each level (e.g. geographic based structure), in order to determine the overall champion at that level, a play-off match or series of play-off matches shall take place between the first placed teams in a format and at a venue determined by the Management Committee. If any match results in a draw at full time, the tie shall be determined by the taking of penalty kicks, in accordance with the International Football Association Board.
22.B Automatic promotion shall be applied for the first two Teams and automatic relegation shall be applied for the last two Teams in each division except as provided for below, subject to the provisions of Rule 2.L.
1. Should one or more Teams withdraw from any one division after the Playing Season has commenced an equal number of Teams to those withdrawing in that division shall not be automatically relegated.
2. Vacancies occurring after the conclusion of the Playing Season may be filled in any of the following ways:
(a) retention of otherwise relegated Team(s); or
(b) additional promotion of the next ranked Team(s) from the division below; or
3. Not in use.
4. When a senior Team is relegated to a lower division of which its reserve Team is a member, or entitled to be a member, such reserve Team must accept relegation to, or retain its position in, the next lower division; and should the senior Team be relegated to the lowest division its reserve Team automatically retires from the Competition.
5. Should either or both of the leading Teams in any of the divisions have its senior Team in the next higher division, promotion shall fall, at the discretion of the General Meeting, to the next highest Team or Teams in the division concerned.
6. Automatic promotion shall be applied to the first two Teams in each Premier Division, subject to compliance with ground grading requirements, and automatic relegation shall be applied for the last four Teams in the Senior Division.
7.Only clubs with Ground Standards as defined by the FA Regional Feeder League ground grading requirements shall be allowed to compete in the Senior Division. Clubs seeking promotion to the Senior Division must apply in writing before 31st March of the preceding season.
22.C Not in use (play-off rule).
22.D In the event of a Team withdrawing from the Competition before completing 75% of its fixtures for the Playing Season all points obtained by or recorded against such defaulting Team shall be expunged from the Competition table. For the purposes of this Rule 22.D a completed fixture shall include any Competition Match(es) which has been awarded by the Management Committee.
Where a team withdraws having completed 75% of its fixtures the points for any unplayed games shall be awarded to the defaulting team's opponents.
22.E Clubs seeking promotion to a higher level within the National League System must make application in writing to The Football Association, copied to the League Secretary, by 31st December in the relevant year. A final list of clubs eligible to be considered for promotion will be published by The Football Association by 15th April.
Final promotion will be subject to the current agreed criteria which will include a club’s final league position and their ability to achieve the required ground grading.
22.F Should the league competition not be able to be completed due to Government, FA/ECFA or Local Authority restrictions, the following clause(s) shall resolve the team rankings within the competition:
(a) Should all teams in the competition have not reached 75% of fixtures completed during the season, the competition shall have all results expunged from the competition tables.
(b) Should all teams in the competition have reached 75% of fixtures completed during the season, the competition shall be considered completed and the competition table shall stand as the Final tables.
For the purposes of this Rule 22.F, a completed fixture shall include any Competition match(es) awarded by the Management Committee.
23.A Registered referees (and assistant referees where approved by The FA or County FA) for all Competition Matches shall be appointed in a manner approved by the Management Committee and by the Sanctioning Authority.
1. In the event of the non-appearance of the appointed referee the appointed senior assistant referee shall take charge and a substitute assistant referee appointed by the competing Teams.
2. In cases where there are no officially appointed Match Officials in attendance, the Clubs shall agree upon a referee. An individual thus agreed upon shall, for that Competition Match, have the full powers, status and authority of a registered referee. Individuals under the age of 16 must not participate either as a referee or assistant referee in any Competition Match.
23.C Where assistant referees are not appointed each Team shall provide a Club assistant referee. Failure to comply with this Rule will result in a fine in accordance with the Fines Tariff.
23.D Senior Division only (Regional NLS Feeder League): No Club shall postpone a Competition match on account of the apparent state of the ground. In the event that such circumstances prevail, Clubs should comply with procedures provided for in the document published by The FA “Recommended procedure for the guidance of Clubs and Referees in determining the suitability of grounds in adverse weather conditions”. Should the ground be declared unfit it is the responsibility of the home Club to immediately advise the Competition, the Appointing Authority, the visiting Club and the Match Officials.
Where the fitness of the ground is in doubt, and the appointed Referee is unable to make any early inspection, clubs shall call a local Referee to inspect the ground in time (but not before 9am on the day of the match or later than 11am) to give a decision to the opposing team as to whether or not to travel. Opponents, Match Officials and League Officers as specified in Rule 20.E MUST be informed of this decision by 11.30am at the latest. Referees so called to inspect a ground may claim reasonable expenses.
All other divisions: The appointed referee shall have power to decide as to the fitness of the Ground in all Competition Matches and that decision shall be final, subject to the determination of the Local Authority or the owners of a Ground, which must be accepted.
23.E Subject to any limits/provisions laid down by the Sanctioning Authority, Match Officials appointed under this Rule shall be paid their fees and expenses in accordance with the Fees Tariff.
Match Officials will be paid their fees and/or expenses by the home Club immediately after the Competition Match. Failure to comply with this Rule will result in a fine in accordance with the Fines Tariff.
For double header matches the fees are as set out in the Fees Tariff.
23.F In the event of a Competition Match not being played because of circumstances over which the Clubs have no control, the Match Officials, if present, shall be entitled to full fee plus expenses. Where a Competition Match is not played owing to one Club being in default, that Club shall be ordered to pay the Match Officials, if they attend the Ground, their full fee and expenses. Failure to comply with this Rule will result in a fine in accordance with the Fines Tariff.
23.G A referee not keeping their engagement and failing to give a satisfactory explanation as to their non-appearance, may be reported to the Affiliated Association with which he or she is registered.
23.H Each Club shall, in a manner prescribed from time to time by The FA, award marks to the referee for each Competition Match and the name of the referee and the marks awarded shall be submitted to the Competition on the prescribed form provided. Clubs failing to comply with this Rule shall be liable to be fined (in accordance with the Fines Tariff) or dealt with as the Management Committee shall determine.
23.I The Competition shall keep a record of the markings and, on the form provided by the prescribed date each Season, shall submit a summary to the Sanctioning Authority.
23.J The referee shall submit a report form, supplied by the Competition, giving the result of the Competition Match, the number of Players in each Team and the time of kick-off to the Referees Secretary within two days of the Competition Match.
The Referee is required to retain the copy of the Team Sheet they were given prior to the match for a period of 28 days and, if requested, send this form by either e-mail or post to the Registration Secretary.
23.K Match Officials shall be supplied, each season, with a copy of the Competition Rules free of charge.
23.L Match Officials shall comply with the provisions of any initiatives of The FA and/or Sanctioning Authority adopted by the Competition.
24.A The Competition shall be designated the 'The Essex Alliance Football League Cups Competition.
24.B The competitions shall be conducted in accordance with the rules, regulations and bye-laws of the Football Association and shall be open only to Clubs competing within the Essex Alliance Football League. The structure and entry criteria for the league's cup competitions shall be reviewed and agreed on an annual basis by the League Management Committee.
24.C Entries shall be received by the League Secretary on or before the Annual General Meeting.
24.D The Competition shall be managed by the League Management Committee. All matches shall be arranged by the Fixtures Secretary. The first drawn club in each round (prior to the Final) shall have the choice of ground and shall be regarded as the “home” Club. In the event of the Club first drawn not being able to provide a suitable pitch for the date fixed or where said ground is declared unfit, the opposing club shall have the choice of ground. Where neither club can provide a venue, a neutral pitch may be used. Expenses for neutral pitches will be shared.
1. Players competing in cup matches shall be duly registered to play in the The Essex Alliance Football League in full compliance with League Rule 18.
2. No player shall be eligible to play in the Semi-Final or Final unless he has been registered for the club and eligible to compete at the Quarter-Final stage of the competition, except by permission of the Management Committee.
3. A player may only represent one team in the same Cup competition in any one season.
4. A player who has competed in a divisional cup competition may not, in that same season, compete in a lower divisional cup competition. A player who has competed in a league cup competition may not, in that same season, compete in a lower ranked league cup competition. A league cup competition is defined as any cross-division competition.
5. A club may at its discretion use up to five substitute players from a nominated list of five at any time in the match, except to replace a player who has been dismissed from the field of play by the Referee for misconduct after the play has commenced, in accordance with League Rule 10
6. A player who has been substituted himself becomes a substitute and may replace another player at any time subject to the substitution being carried out in accordance with Law 3 of the Laws of Association Football.
7. Any Club found in breach of any of the provisions of this Rule may be struck out of the competition, subject to a replay not being ordered and/or otherwise dealt with by the Management Committee who may impose fines as they deem appropriate. The opposing side may also be reinstated into the Competition if such action is deemed appropriate by the Management Committee.
24.F In the event of a Cup tie having to be cancelled for any reason, notification must be made as detailed under the provision of League Rule 20.
24.G Referees for all matches and Assistant Referees, if available, shall be appointed by the Referees Secretary. In matches prior to the semi-finals, upon the request of any club, Assistant Referees will be appointed where available. The club(s) making the request will pay their fees. Match Officials under these rules shall be entitled to charge a match fee which shall be the maximum allowed by the sanctioning Association for matches in the competition. All fees shall be deemed to include expenses.
The Referees and Assistant Referees fees shall be paid to them before or immediately after the match by the home club, who shall recover the full Referees fee and half the Assistant Referees fees from their opponents. The away team shall pay the home team before leaving the ground.
24.H The Draw shall be made by the Management Committee which will also fix the grounds and dates by which the ties shall be played
In all Cup competitions, the tie shall be decided at the first game by two periods of 45 minutes. If any match results in a draw at full time, the team winning the tie shall be decided by the taking of penalty kicks, in accordance with the International Board decision. In all matches, the duration of play shall not be less than 60 minutes, followed if necessary by penalties.
Clubs competing in the finals shall (funds permitting) receive medals.
1. Each Club appearing in the competitions cup finals shall be required to provide programme information to the appointed cup final programme editor at least 14 days before the date scheduled for the final.
2. Each club appearing in the competition cup finals shall supply two match balls for use in the final.
3. Where the Management Committee deem necessary, each Club appearing in the competition cup finals may be responsible for the sales/fees for 50 cup final entrance tickets of which payment should be made to the League no later than 7 days prior to the date of the final. Additional pre-paid cup final tickets may be requested by each competing finalist at a cost to be agreed annually by the Management Committee
24.J The competition shall take prior claims over a league fixture. The Fixtures Secretary shall have the power to decide the priority of all League and Cup fixtures.
24.K With the exceptions stated above, the Rules of The Essex Alliance Football League shall, wherever applicable, govern the competition.
24.L Each club shall be deemed to have given its assent to the foregoing Rules and to abide by the League Management Committee, subject to the provisions of League Rule 7.
|Player Registration Fee
|Referee Fee – Senior Division (max. £45 inclusive)
Referee Fee – All other divisions (max. £40 inclusive)
Referee Fee – double headers
Referee expenses rate
0p / mile
|Assistant Referee Fee – Senior Division (max. £30 incl.)
Assistant Referee Fee – all other divisions (max. £30 incl.)
Assistant Referee expenses rate
0p / mile
|Failure to Affiliate
|Failure to comply with FA initiatives
|Unauthorised entry of teams into other Competitions
|Failure to obtain consent for change of Club name
|Failure to pay a deposit
|Failure to provide affiliation number/details form
|Communications conducted by persons other than nominated officers
|Failure to be represented at a Council meeting
|Failure to be represented at two consecutive meetings
|Failure to comply with an instruction of the management committee
|Failure to pay a fine within the required timeframe
|Failure to be represented at AGM
|Failure to be represented at SGM
|Failure to submit the required written agreement or to notify changes to signatories
|Failure to provide notice of intended withdrawal before deadline
|Failure to commence/complete fixtures
|Failure to submit the required trophy agreement
|Failure to return Trophy (Senior Division teams)
|Failure to return Trophy (all other teams)
|Failure to return trophy in a clean state for re-presentation
|Failure to have the required public liability insurance
|Failure to have the required personal accident insurance
|Failure to correctly register a player
|Failure to have the required number of registered players prior to the Playing Season commencing
|£ 20 /team
|Registering or playing for multiple clubs, or inaccurate completion of a registration form
|Fielding more than the permitted number of players who have participated in Senior Competition matches
|Playing an ineligible player
|Delaying kick off by not having a change of colours
|Failure to have different numbered shirts
|Late kick off
|Failing to provide goal nets, corner flags, suitable footballs
|Failure to play matches on the date fixed
|Failing to send pitch allocation dates to Fixture Secretary
|Failure to provide details of a fixture
|Failure to keep engagement (Senior Division teams)
|Failure to keep engagement (all other teams)
|Failure to observe precedence
|Failure to notify postponement
|Failing to identify a team captain
|Failing to carry out Team Sheet procedure
|Failure to abide by ground grading requirements
|Failure to abide by admission requirements
|Late result sheet
|Failure to provide result
|Incorrect result sheet
|Failure to provide club assistant referee
|Failure to pay match officials’ fees and expenses
|Failure to pay match officials where a match is not played
|Failure to provide referee’s mark