For all Leagues at Steps 1 to 6 of the National League System – From The Football Association
4th March 2022
Guidance for activities in relation to international events
Several Leagues have made recent representations to The FA on behalf of their Clubs relating to how they may show solidarity in response to international events. To that end, please find below guidance for any activities in relation to international events which will be applicable across any fixtures in The FA’s National League System until the end of the 2021/22 season: –
• The FA through its Leagues and Clubs has made great strides in recent years to help ensure that English football is an open, diverse and inclusive game;
• Any actions or behaviours by Clubs, players or officials to either protest or show support in relation to international events would be considered by The FA on a case- by -case basis. However, it is not a breach of FA Rules for any internat ionally recognised national flags to simply be displayed, either on the field of play or by fans in the stadium, as they are not deemed to be a discriminatory, political or religious message or symbol;
• The FA has clear Kit and Advertising Regulations that do prohibit the use of threatening, abusive, indecent, insulting, discriminatory, political or religious messages or symbols that appear on or are incorporated in any item of clothing, footwear or other equipment on the field of play. However, under FA Rules, an internationally recognised national flag does not fall into this category.
• FA Standardised Rules – Rule 7.1 – allows Clubs to wear a different home kit for one home match per season, subject to the authorisation of their Leagues Board and provided that this complies with The FA’s Kit and Advertising Regulations and any provision as listed above:
“On or before a date specified by the Company each year, every Club shall notify the Competition Secretary, in writing, of details of their first choice colours for outfield players and their goalkeeper (shirts, shorts and socks) and such details shall be printed in the Handbook published by the Company for the ensuing Playing Season.
The colours registered by each Club shall be worn during the following season when playing at home. Shirts must be numbered 1 to 20 or [in accordance with the Competition squad numbering provision] such that the numbers can be clearly identified by officials and spectators. Striped, hooped or otherwise patterned shirts shall have numbers affixed to contrasting patches or numbers in a contrasting colour with bold outline. No changes to the first choice colours or combination of colours shall be permitted without the consent of the Board. Subject to the consent of the Board, each Club is authorised on one occasion per Playing Season to wear an alternative strip in a home match.”