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Durham CSFA Competition Rules

The rules detailed below apply to all DCSFA Year 7 to Year 13 competitions except where stated under the heading of any specific competition.

1. LAWS OF THE GAME

The Laws of the Game shall be those of the Football Association except as otherwise stated.

2. THE TROPHIES

a)     The Trophies are the property of Durham County Schools’ Football Association.

b)     The winners of the finals shall be the holders of the cups.

c)      The winners of each trophy shall make good any damage incurred, and shall, at their own expense return the trophy cleaned, polished and suitably engraved to the Cup Secretary by 21st February in the ensuing season. Failure to do this may lead to non-acceptance of entries for the following season.

3. CLOSING DATE FOR ENTRIES

a)     The inter-school competitions will be open to all affiliated schools within the 1972 geographical boundaries of County Durham at a fee of £5 per school per competition.

b)     The inter-association competitions will be open to all affiliated associations within Durham County at a fee of £5 per association per competition.

c)     Associations affiliated to Cleveland CSFA or Northumberlandd CSFA may enter the inter-association competitions organised by DCSFA upon the payment of an affiliation fee to DCSFA and a fee of £5 per association per competition.

d)     All entries accompanied by fees to reach the Secretary by June 30th prior to the commencement of the season.

4. THE COMPETITIONS

All rounds will be "open". The competitions will be administered by the Cup Secretaries who shall report to Council.

5. MEMENTOES

a)     Both teams in each final will be awarded suitable mementoes of equal value. The set in each case to consist of sixteen for 11 v 11 competitions and fourteen for 9 v 9 competitions.

b)     Three mementoes shall be awarded to the match officials (referee and two assistant referees) officiating at a final tie.

6. CONTROL

a)     ALL affiliated SCHOOL TEAMS playing within the DCSFA MUST be under the control of one of the following:

i.          a qualified, practicing teacher, recognised as such by the Department for Children, Schools and Families.

ii.          an unqualified teacher recognised as such by the school and employed within the school.

iii.          a retired teacher, or present or past employee of the Education Service who has received direct approval in writing from the Head Teacher.

iv.          a person (e.g. Parent, coach or similar) who has direct approval in writing from the Head Teacher.

NB: In all cases individuals MUST have undergone a successful School (i & ii) or a FA DBS Disclosure & Barring Service check (iii & iv). Any payment involved being the responsibility of the school.

A specific School DBS would suffice if an individual, in control of the team, was a present employee of the Education Service within the school where the team is based.

b)     ALL ASSOCIATION AND COUNTY representative teams MUST be under the control of the following:

i.          a qualified, practicing teacher, recognised by the Department for Children, Schools and Families.

ii.          an unqualified teacher recognised by and employed within a school.

iii.          a retired teacher, or past or present employee of the Education Service who has received written approval by the Association or County SFA.

iv.          a person (e.g. Parent, coach or similar) who has had direct approval in writing from the Association or County Schools’ FA.

NB: ALL staff directly working with Association / County teams must be registered and approved by ESFA. This means that staff directly working must have:

  • An in-date FA DBS (within the past 3 years)
  • Attended FA Safeguarding training – or, for practicing teachers, unqualified teachers and Education employees, School Safeguarding training within the last 3 years – where this is out of date and School Safeguarding training isn’t available, training must be updated, using The FA on-line facility which is free
  • If you are a retired teacher or have been out of the profession for 3 years you are now expected to complete The FA Safeguarding training and then renew online, every 3 years
  • Compliance with the 3 bullet points above is essential as part of the ESFA Affiliation process
  • If an Association ‘runs’ Association teams the Association MUST HAVE a suitably qualified, registered and agreed with ESFA, Child Welfare Officer
  • Any payment/cost involved for the above will be the responsibility of the Association/County.

PLEASE NOTE: ALL PERSONS IN CHARGE OF SCHOOL / ASSOCIATION / COUNTY TEAMS MUST ABIDE BY THE DCSFA ‘CODE OF CONDUCT

7. FIELD OF PLAY

a)     The following recommended pitch sizes for 9 v 9 and 11 v 11 youth football.

Age group

Type

Length

Width

Goal height

Goal width

U12

9 v 9

80 yards

50 yards

7 feet

16 feet

U13 / U14

11 v 11

90 yards

55 yards

7 feet

21 feet*

U15 / U16

11 v 11

100 yards

60 yards

8 feet

24 feet

U17 / U18

11 v 11

110 yards

70 yards

8 feet

24 feet


If a pitch is provided for U13 / U14 it is recommended that 7 x 21 goalpost are provided. However, it should be noted that 8 x 24 would also be acceptable as not all sites will be able to provide for this age group.

b)     Matches may be played on 3/4G artificial surfaces if both teams agree (before the away team travels). DCSFA can insist on matches being played on a 3/4G surface in matters of urgency.

8. THE BALL

The ball shall be size 5 except where stated under a specific competition rule.

9. SUBSTITUTES

a)     In all 9 v 9 and 11 v 11 matches five substitutes, drawn from five named players, may be used at any time. Up to and including the Under 18 age-group repeated substitutions are allowed.

b)     Substitutions will only be made during a break in play.

c)      Players that have been substituted can return to the field of play.

10. PROTESTS

a)     Protests to be lodged within SEVEN days (including Sunday) of the game being played, accompanied by a hearing fee of £30, which will be forfeited if the protest is considered frivolous.

b)     Any protest relating to the ground, goal posts, cross bars or any other appurtenances of the game must be lodged with the referee, in writing, before the commencement of the game.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION RELATING TO PROTESTS PLEASE SEE CONSTITUTION RULE 10.

11. TARGET DATES

The dates fixed for the playing of the rounds must be strictly adhered to. Defaulting teams will be disqualified.

12. PLAYERS

a)     If DCSFA has any doubt over the qualification of a player taking part in any competition, it shall have the power to call upon the player’s school / academy / college / association to which he / she belongs to prove that he / she is qualified according to the rules.

b)     Each team shall consist of players drawn from one school / academy / college / association, who are bona fide pupils / students at that school / academy / college / association.

c)      No player shall play for more than one team in the competition except on a bona fide change of school / academy / college / association and any such change must be notified to and sanctioned by the Cup Secretary.

d)     Mixed gender matches may be played in line with current FA regulations.

e)     Any team breaking rules 12a and / or b will be disqualified.

13. MATCH ARRANGEMENTS

a)     Unless, otherwise, mutually agreed, the team drawn first in each tie will have choice of ground.

b)     In all ties BOTH teams share the responsibility of arranging the game at least SEVEN days before the due date.  Where schools / associations are not mutually agreed on a date then the matter will be referred to the Cup Secretary.

c)      In the event of colours being the same the visitors must change.

d)     The teams shall mutually agree upon a referee, except the finals, when the Secretary will appoint.

e)     In the event of a tie ending in a draw, extra time of 10 minutes each way (7 minutes at Under 12 and Under 13) will be played. If the game is still a draw the result will be decided by the taking of kicks from the penalty mark (taken in accordance with the recommendations of FIFA) and published in the Laws of the Game.

f)       In the event of the final ending in a draw the result will be decided by the taking of kicks from the penalty mark (taken in accordance with the recommendations of FIFA) and published in the Laws of the Game.

g)      The representative of the WINNING team must report the result of each tie to the Cup Secretary within 48 hours of the match ending. Any results not received within 48 hours will lead to the elimination of the team concerned.

h)     In the case of a match not being arranged to be played by the due date, an extension must have been requested, IN WRITING, at least SEVEN days before the date of the round, giving reasons for non-arrangement. Failure to do so will lead to elimination from the competition.

14. FINANCE

a)     No travelling expenses will be charged at any stage of the competitions.

b)     In the finals expenses will be deducted as follows:

(i)     referee and assistant referees

(ii)    ground.

15. FINALS

a)     Grounds for finals should be enclosed.

b)     Cup Secretaries / Secretary will deal with the finals regarding dates, venues and match officials.

c)      All the working expenses of the competitions will be provided for out of the season's income. The whole of the proceeds of the finals will he retained by the County Association.

16. AMENDMENTS OF COMPETITION RULES

a)     These competition rules may be altered only at the AGM of DCSFA.

b)     The Council shall have the power to deal with any matters not mentioned in these rules.

17. DECLARATION

These competition rules were approved by the AGM held on Tuesday 6 July 2021 and shall remain in force until amendments are made at a future AGM.