Check out below to see our rules for our 7-a-side and 11-a-side competitions. 


You can also view our Terms and Conditions here. 

Playing at Alert Level 2

Here are our guidelines and procedures so we can play football at Alert Level 2. 


  • Players to scan either the council or Better Football QR codes at the ground. 
  • Hand sanitizer will be available. 
  • Vouchers will not be given out, a record of the players of the day will be made and these will be handed out in Alert Level 1. 
  • We advise no hand shaking.
  • No spectators. You may apply for an exemption to this through 
  • Masks will not be required to be worn while playing, however off the pitch players need to follow government guidelines - Alert Level 2 | Unite against COVID-19 (
  • For 7aside, teams are advised to only turn up 10 minutes before their game and find their own area off the pitch. Teams are not allowed to enter the pitch before their game. 
  • For 11aside, teams can warm up before the game as long as they can find their own area. 

Contact tracing

During Alert Level 2, teams will need to enter their team sheet before their game. This information will only be used for contact tracing. 

Teams that have not submitted team sheets will not be able to play the following week until they have done so.  

For more information on government guidelines see Alert Level 2 | Unite against COVID-19 (

7-a-side team sheet 

11-a-side team sheet 



  • Unless otherwise stated, FIFA 11-a-side rules apply.
  • Better Football reserves the right to set up a playing field as it deems appropriate for the respective venue.
  • If a team does not arrive by 4 minutes after kick-off then the game is defaulted, and a 3-0 win is awarded to the opposition. The Venue Manager will have the final decision. 
  • There is limited sliding allowed. Should a referee deem your slide to be a tackle, or feels your movement was dangerous in any way, you may be pulled up for a foul or penalised. We allow players to slide to intercept a pass, stop the ball from going out, or any other action where there are no other players immediately near the movement. The definition of a slide is where 2 feet are off the ground and the player is lunging into the opponent. It is the referee’s discretion to determine the intent of the challenge.
  • Kick-offs are direct.
  • All free kicks are direct, in the interests of health and safety the referee reserves the right to enforce a one step free kick, this is especially enforced in mixed divisions.
  • There are no offsides.
  • The goalkeeper cannot drop-kick the ball directly from their hands, a free kick will be given to the opposition where the ball lands. From the goalkeeper’s possession there must be a minimum of 2 bounces before the goalkeeper can play the ball with their feet. 
  • Proper throw-in rules apply. The goalkeeper cannot pick up the ball from a throw in.

A: Throw ins: at the moment of delivering the ball, the thrower must: 

  1. Stand facing the field of play
  2. Have part of each foot on the touchline or on the ground outside the touchline
  3. Throw the ball with both hands from behind and over the head from the point where it left the field of play

B: All opponents must stand at least 2 m (2 yds) from the point on the touchline where the throw-in is to be taken

C: The ball is in play when it enters the playing field. If the ball touches the ground before entering the field, the throw-in is retaken by the same team from the same position.

D: If the throw-in is not taken correctly it is retaken by the opposing team.

E: If a player, while correctly taking a throw-in, deliberately throws the ball at an opponent in order to play the ball again but not in a careless or a reckless manner or with excessive force, the referee will allow play to continue.

F: The thrower must not touch the ball again until it has touched another player from either team.

  • Goal-kicks must be taken from the ground. The ball must not be moving and can be placed anywhere inside the penalty area. In windy conditions this rule will be implemented as best as possible.
  • Opposition players must be at least 5 paces away from any free-kick or kick-off.
  • If an infringement means there is a free kick within the goal area then a penalty is awarded, not a free kick.
  • Start, half-time, and full-time will be signalled via the event staff's airhorn.
  • The game starts and ends on the event staff's airhorn as decided on the night.

Mixed Teams

  • 7-a-side: There must always be a minimum of 2 female players on the field from each team. If a team is unable to field 2 female players, then they must play the game with one less player per female player that they cannot field. 

Masters Teams

  • 7-a-side: There can be a maximum of 2 under 35 players in the match day squad, it is the Event staff's judgement on whether a player is eligible or not. If a team feels that the opposition are breaking the rules this must be brought up on the night of the game with the referee and event staff.

Disciplinary Action

  • Blue card: The team of the player receiving a Blue card, must substitute the player who receives the card for a minimum of 4 minutes. If the player that was shown a card is off the field when the game goes to penalties. Then they cannot participate in the kicks from the spot or be their team’s goalkeeper. If the team does not have a substitute or for mixed teams, where they would not meet the minimum female player numbers, the team must continue playing with one less player on the field instead. 3 blue cards in a game for an individual player may result in a ban.
  • Yellow card: The receiving player must leave the pitch for a minimum of 4 minutes. The player cannot be replaced during this time, this includes games where there is extra time added. If the player that was shown a card is off the field when the game goes to penalties. Then they cannot participate in the kicks from the spot or be their team’s goalkeeper. The yellow card will be used in 7-a-side the same as a Red card is used in the LOTG, for example: If the last man in a team takes out an attacker in a clear goalscoring opportunity then a yellow card is given, not a red.
  • Red card: reserved mainly for violent conduct but it can also be used by the referee with their discretion. The receiving player must leave the pitch for the remainder of the game. If a substitute is shown a red card, the on-field players must reduce their numbers accordingly.
  • A player who receives a red card may be further suspended for future games. This will be decided by the referee and Venue Manager after the game. All red cards will be reported to the venue manager on the night.
  • Any player reported for violent conduct will receive a longer ban to be decided by the referee and venue manager and reported to the team as soon as possible. Any player found guilty of violent conduct can potentially be banned from the league.
  • Teams with continued poor discipline, as decided by Better Football Ltd will be removed from the league. No fees paid will be refunded.


  • All penalty kicks are taken from the top of the goal area directly in front of goal from the goal line or from the marked penalty spot (depending on venue).
  • The goalkeeper must be on the line when the penalty is taken.
  • Players must plant their foot next to the ball without any run up when taking a penalty.
  • The ball is in play when it is kicked and clearly moves. The kicker must not play the ball again until it has touched another player. The penalty kick is completed when the ball stops moving, goes out of play or the referee stops play for any offence.

When games are to be decided by a penalty shoot-out, these rules apply:

  • Players serving a blue, yellow, or red card at the final whistle may not partake in the shoot-out.
  • Shoot-outs consist of a best of three, and if no winner then the shoot-out continues as sudden death (one player to score, and one to miss).
  • Players may only take one penalty per cycle, meaning they may not take another penalty before everyone else on their team has had their turn (in situations where penalty shoot-outs continue this long). 
  • If one team has less numbers due to a player being off the field from a card, the opposing team can choose to nominate one person from their team to also not take kicks to even the numbers before a player can take a subsequent kick.
  • Goalkeepers CAN be changed after the final whistle. The goalkeeper cannot be changed throughout the shootout unless injured. 
  • All players (excluding those who are serving catutions) can take part in the penalty shoot-out . 


  • A player seen by the referee spitting on the pitch will be issued with a yellow card. 
  • Players cannot play for two teams during the course of a season unless the captain of the opposing team agrees. 
    • The Venue Manager can make a call to allow this to happen if a team has less than 12 players. 
  • The referees word is final.