COVID-19 guidance pictured at Lewes's Dripping Pan stadium

COVID-19 update: 19 December

COVID-19 guidance for 'non-elite' football updated following Tier 4 announcement

*BBFA Regional COVID Tier graphic updated on 04.01.21 to reflect all four seperate Tier 4 areas within Berks & Bucks FA boundaries*

Further to the government’s announcement on Saturday 19 December with regards to the introduction of Tier 4 areas and the latest information on COVID-19, The FA has issued the following update.

Football for adult participants across ‘non-elite’ football in Tier 4 areas is not permitted, including all training and fixtures. This immediate advice in place from 20 December applies to the following aspects of ‘non-elite’ football in England in Tier 4 areas:

• Steps three to six of the National League System (NLS)
• Tiers three to seven of the Women’s Football Pyramid
• Regional NLS feeder leagues
• Barclays FA WSL Academy League (unless under elite guidance)
• Indoor and outdoor adult grassroots football
• Vitality Women’s FA Cup (which is currently classified as ‘non-elite’ at this stage in the competition)

BBFA Location by COVID Tier

The government’s Tier 4 guidance states organised outdoor sport for under-18s and disabled people will be allowed, while there are exemptions for FA Girls' Regional Talent Clubs. The government’s guidelines on travel between tiers should be adhered to. These players cannot move in or out of Tier 4 to train or play.

The government’s Tier 4 guidance confirms that elite sportspeople (and their coaches if necessary, or parents/guardians if they are under 18) are able to compete and train.

It is extremely important that clubs, players, coaches, match officials, league officials, volunteers, parents, carers, and facility providers in Tiers 1 to 3 (and permitted football in Tier 4) continue to strictly follow both the UK Government's latest guidance on COVID-19 and respective bespoke guidance documents from The FA. Any incidents of non-compliance will be reported to the local County Football Association.

If there are any further updates from government The FA will communicate these in due course.

Postcode Checker

Enter the postcode where you’re living or spend most of your time to find out what tier you are in and what the rules are.

FAQs for Under 18 and Disability Football under Tier 4 Restrictions

If one of our Under 18s players turns 18 midway through the year can they still play for our Under 18 team under Tier 4 restrictions?

Yes. The exemption for Under 18s includes young people who were under 18 on 31 August 2020, even if they turn 18 during the remainder of the academic year.

Does this mean that FA Girls' Regional Talent Clubs will be able to travel from a Tier 4 to Tier 2 to train and play?

Yes, as long as they are operating under elite protocols than they are able to train and compete (including travel in and out of Tier 4).

Some of our players live in Tier 2 & Tier 3 areas, are they allowed to train and play with us in Tier 4?

No, Under 18 players are not permitted to travel outside of their Tier area to train and play. There are no travel exemptions for Under 18s unless teams are operating under elite protocols.

•  Some of our Coaches live in a different Tier 4 area to our players, are they allowed to travel between Tiers to take training and matches?

No, Coaches are not permitted to travel outside of their Tier area to train and play. There are no travel exemptions for grassroots coaches not working with elite sportspeople, as per Government guidance.

Can Under 18’s travel between Tier 4 areas to train and play or do they have to stay in their own Tier 4 area? For example could a Berkshire (Tier 4) team travel to Buckinghamshire (Tier 4) to play a game? 

No. You should not travel between neighbouring Tier 4 areas, even if they share a border. Each Tier 4 area is seen as separate, they are not one continuous area. You can only travel within your Tier 4 area and cannot travel between Tier 4 areas. Click here to view the full list of Tier locations. 

If you are unsure as to what Tier area you are in, please use the Gov.UK postcode checker.

If my club has multiple match/training venues that are in different Tier 4 areas can we still use them? 

As above you will only be able to play or train at the venues that sit within your Tier area. You will not be able to travel to a different Tier areas to train or play.

COVID-19 Guidance

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