YEL Update – 29th September 2023

This Update has FIVE important messages this week which we would ask you to please read.

Play Safe Weekend – Sat 30th Sept/Sun 1st Oct
Mini Soccer – Know the rules – Read them!
Fines for incomplete match returns to be issued from this weekend
Referees – you MUST use a YEL appointed referee unless previously agreed
YEL Game Day Hotline

Play Safe Weekend – Sat 30th Sep/Sun 1st Oct

This year’s Play Safe message is simple and direct.:
Everywhere. Every time. Everyone.
We all have a role to play to keep children safe – meaning positively influencing every player, coach/manager, club official, volunteer, parent/carer, match official & spectator. It also means reporting anything which doesn’t look or feel quite right – It could be a safeguarding issue. Share your concerns about the wellbeing of any child with your Club Welfare Officer. Please ensure your team captains wear the Play Safe-branded armbands and you wear the pin badges which have been sent out by The FA.

Mini Soccer – know the rules – Read them!

We’ve received some bizarre questions around mini soccer – Does the retreat line exist at U10? Is it a penalty or free kick inside the penalty area if a defending player handles the ball in the box in a U8 game? Does the back pass rule apply to mini soccer – I’ve heard it only comes in at U11?

Here’s the mini soccer handbook. Main variation applies to U7-U9 football where an indirect free kick is given for heading the ball – YEL U7-U9s are part of The FA no heading pilot. Also, YEL does NOT endorse Power Play – YEL Update 22/9 for details of what to do if score becomes excessive.

Fines for incomplete match returns to be applied from this weekend

We are now a month into the season and all teams should be completing match returns on Full-Time. Notice has been given to everyone in these weekly Updates and in the weekly incomplete match reports emails that come out from the league.

If you are still unsure if you are completing them correctly, read the step by step ‘Basic guide to running a YEL Team’ found in the Useful information for coaches section on

DO make sure you complete the match return by logging into Full-Time

DO make sure you complete all sections

DO make sure you ONLY list the players who started in the ‘started’ section; list the players who started as subs and came on in the ‘subs used section’ (There should be no entries in the ‘subs unused’ section as all children who attend games should play at some stage)

DO ensure the return is completed within 24 hours of the advertised kick off time (League Regulation 3C)

DO NOT use MatchDay app to complete your match return. It’s poor reliability is well known and has been widely advertised by the YEL. We’ll not accept this as a valid reason for an incomplete match return

Referees – you MUST use a YEL appointed referee unless previously agreed

Great news! Things are improving & numbers of referees are returning to pre Covid levels. We now need to tighten the rules regarding the use of YEL appointed refs. If a ref is appointed before midnight on Wednesday, you MUST use them unless:

  1. You have already supplied the full details of your own qualified referee to and the league has registered them and approved them to officiate all of your games OR
  2. You have notified the league and supplied full details of the qualified referee at least 10 days prior to the game and received confirmation that the league agrees for you to use them OR
  3. You have received an automated Full-Time ‘Referee: TBC’ email on a Sat/Sun and then have contacted to give full details of your own qualified referee that you have found BEFORE 5pm on the Monday when the late list of available games goes out to all referees. Without notifying us prior to 5pm, your game will be advertised and if a YEL referee asks for it, their appointment will take priority over any referee that you wish to use.

Anyone that refuses to use a YEL appointed referee will be referred to the YEL Discipline and is highly likely to receive a fine for failing to follow a management instruction and reimbursement of the referee fee if we are unable to find them another suitable game.

YEL Game Day hotline  

If you have any issues or on the day queries relating to your game only, you can contact the YEL Game Day Hotline number for advice.

07510 305354

Available between 9.30am and 12.30pm on Saturdays and Sundays.

ONLY AVAILABLE FOR ON THE DAY MATCH RELATED ENQUIRIES – no other issues will be discussed.

Contacting the YEL

If you email the YEL OFFICE – – please ensure you state the team name, age group and playing day so we can quickly deal with the enquiry

Rob Harwood CEO

Leave a comment