Respect Leagues

The FA is inviting every league in the country to sign-up to the principles of Respect and to introduce some practical steps at club level to ensure football is played in a safe, positive environment. The programme is free to join and there are resources available to support leagues to introduce Respect.

Already 752 leagues out of 1,200 have signed up for Respect although implementation of the Respect interventions is at different stages across those leagues. These leagues have all taken a positive step towards ensuring no-one has to endure abuse in grassroots football.

The Respect programme includes four practical steps to improve behaviour - on the pitch and on the sidelines - in and at matches throughout the country:

Step 1: Respect Codes of Conduct

There is a Code of Conduct for each of the five main types of football participant: young players, adult players, spectators and parents/carers, coaches, team managers and club officials, and match officials. Each Code explains actions can be taken if the Code is broken.

Step 2: Designated Spectator Areas

The FA recommends introducing marked areas along the touchlines, within which spectators must stay. The idea behind this is to encourage parents and spectators to take a step back from the pitch and support the teams in a more responsible manner.

Step 3: Captain taking responsibility

There will be a drive to enhance captaincy skills, encouraging captains to take full responsibility for their players' actions and behaviour.

Step 4: Referee managing the game

There will be a similar drive to enhance referees' match management skills - to create an environment where potential problems are addressed before they escalate.

The FA recommends that whole leagues or divisions sign-up to Respect rather than just individual clubs. This will mean when your team plays a league game, the opposition has also signed up to Respect.

If you are a league and want to sign up to Respect, contact Bobby Madley (Respect Lead Officer at West Riding County FA) to find out more.