Swindon P.S.F.A Swindon Primary Schools Football Association


Which children can play in a school team?

F.A. rules permit children in two-year age bands to play in the same match i.e. Year 5 and Year 6. This means a Year 4 aged player is not permitted to participate in any match in which Year 6 pupils are participating and a Year 3 aged pupil is not allowed to take part in any match in which Year 5 pupils are playing.

Can girls and boys play in the same team?

Yes, boys and girls are eligible to play in the same team in all of our competitions with the exception of the Primary Schools’ (Girls’) Cup, the indoor 5 a-side festivals for Year 5 & Year 6 girls and the E.S.F.A. Pokémon u-11 7 a-side Cup for Girls.          

How many players can play?

All inter-school matches organised by Swindon P.S.F.A. or by us on behalf of the E.S.F.A. are 7 a-side. Each school may select 7 players to play from a squad of 10 at each match.

How many substitutes can I use?

Each side may have a maximum of 3 substitutes at a match however there is no limit to the number of substitutions a team can make. This system of ‘rolling substitutes’ allows players to return to a match after being injured or rested and enables teams to be weakened to avoid huge score-lines.

Who can be in charge of a school team?

Any adult with qualified teacher status or a person registered with Swindon P.S.F.A. as an A.O.T.T. (Adult Other Than Teacher) can be in charge of a school team. An A.O.T.T. may be the school caretaker, a teaching assistant or another person directly employed by the school to run their school football team.

Can an A.O.T.T. be solely in charge of a school team?

Yes, an A.O.T.T. may be solely in charge of a school team provided they have an Enhanced DBS certificate from the FA and a Level 1 Coaching Certificate. They must also be registered as an A.O.T.T. with this association.

Which school is responsible for arranging or postponing a match?

The teacher (or A.O.T.T.) in charge of the home team is responsible for arranging the date of the match. This must be done by e-mail. The teacher (or A.O.T.T.) in charge of the away team must respond to this via e-mail within 7 days. All matches must be confirmed by the teacher  (or A.O.T.T.) in charge of the home team by e-mail and then by telephone by 1.00 p.m. (or no less than 3 hours if the match is scheduled for a different time) on the day the match is due to be played.

Who can referee matches?

The teacher (or A.O.T.T.) in charge of the home team must referee the match. If this person is unable to referee then they can ask the teacher (or A.O.T.T.) in charge of the away school team to officiate. If this person is unable to referee the match then the teacher (or A.O.T.T.) in charge of the home school team may appoint another person to do so who is employed at their school. This person must not be a parent or relative of any player taking part in the match.

How do I know which teams my school needs to play and when?

All information about fixture dates can be found on this website on the Primary Schools’ Leagues, Cup, Shield, Plate or Girls’ Cup page.

How do I arrange friendly matches against other school teams?

Many schools run a 'B' team to give less able Year 5 and 6 pupils the opportunity to represent their school. Some also run teams for Year 3 and 4 pupils. A list of which schools run these other teams can be found by clicking here

What happens if I can’t play a match in the scheduled week?

All matches should be attempted to be played in the week in which they are scheduled but schools may rearrange dates and venues by mutual agreement.

How long do matches last?

All matches are of two periods of 20 minutes with teams changing ends after the first period.

What size pitch are matches played on ?

The field of play must conform to the dimensions set out by the FA for mini-soccer. (to download a PDF showing pitch dimensions click here)

What size and type of goals should I use ?

Schools should use mini-soccer goals measuring 3.66m wide by 1.83m high and conform to BSEN 748 (2004) and BS 8462 (2005). (To download a PDF of the FA’s Goalpost Safety Guidelines click here)

What size ball do we use ?

A size 4 football must be used.

What happens if both teams wear the same colour kit ?

If there is a clash of colours between teams, the home team should change shirts. If this is not possible the home team should wear bibs of a contrasting colour to that of the away team.

What happens if the match is drawn in a Cup, Shield or Plate tie?

If the scores remain level at the end of normal time there will be two further periods of extra time each lasting 5 minutes with teams changing ends after the first period. Should the scores still remain level at the end of extra time, the result of the tie will be determined by the taking of 5 penalty kicks as per FIFA rules.

What happens if a match needs to be abandoned?

Matches should only be abandoned, if in the opinion of the referee there is a serious risk to the health and safety of players. An abandoned match may be replayed at a later date by mutual agreement of the teachers or A.O.T.T.s in charge of both teams. The secretary must also be informed that the match was abandoned and the reason(s) why.

How do I send in results?

Both the teacher or A.O.T.T. in charge of the home team and that of the away team should notify the secretary, by e-mail of the result and score by 6.00p.m on the Friday of the week in which the fixture was played. The e-mail address is swindonpsfa@gmail.com

What happens if I cannot arrange a match with another school?

Schools may apply to the Executive Committee for the awarding of points for unplayed League or Girls’ Cup matches after the deadline has passed. Schools submitting claims for points must inform their opponents in writing that they are doing so. Applications must state the reason(s) for claiming points and be accompanied by written evidence showing that attempt(s) were made to arrange the fixture. In cases where the Executive Committee awards points to a team the fixtures will show either a home win (h/w) or away win (a/w) as appropriate and three points will be awarded. No points will be awarded to the opponent.