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FAQs

FAQs

Q. How are match officials assessed?

A. The performances of all match officials are constantly monitored by way of club and match observers, match videos or DVD and footage received by the referee coaches. The emphasis is on development of referees and refereeing standards and the match assessor is asked to appraise the referee’s performance against the following competencies;

  • Application of the Laws of the Game and disciplinary control
  • Management of the games and players
  • Personality
  • Teamwork
  • Fitness, positioning and movements

Club managers also compile a report on the Referees’ performance and all of this data helps to produce a ‘merit list’ of match officials on which appointments, retention or reclassification are based. Clubs are encouraged to provide constructive feedback on match officials and dialogue is encouraged with Professional Game Match Officials (PGMOL), the body funded by the football authorities to appoint, manage and train across all Premier League, EFL and FA competitions.

The EFL Referees’ Manager works with his group in a bid to constantly improve standards and support the development of match officials.

Q. What is Select Group 2?

A. Select Group 2 is an initiative backed by the EFL in conjunction with the FA and Premier League. It consists of 21 professional full-time referees and 35 assistant referees, officiating across the Sky Bet Championship and supporting the development of refereeing standards across the Sky Bet EFL as a whole, by providing a learning environment for all referees, ultimately aiming to improve consistency across all leagues.

This investment to support development of match officials in the EFL is part of a joint initiative adopted across English football that aims to promote honesty, integrity and positive behaviour across the game. For more information on SG2 please click here

How are match officials selected and where do I find the latest match officials appointments?

A. Appointments are made by the Professional Game Match Officials Board (PGMOL). You can find the latest match official appointments on our website HERE.

Q. Where can I find key competition dates for the current season?

A. There is handy ‘key dates’ page on our website that provides details of draw/round dates for the Carabao Cup, Papa John’s Trophy and also information around the EFL Play-Off Finals and conclusion of the season. To view the key dates page click HERE.

Q. When are the TV games selected?

A. In order to assist supporters with their plans around fixtures selected for broadcast, the EFL and broadcast partners Sky Sports agreed to a minimum five week commitment for the announcement of games for TV coverage. The five week commitment is shortened to four weeks’ public notice from March 2020 and the notice period remains at three weeks for the penultimate weekend of the season.

Q. Where can I find the current list of broadcast selections?

A. You can view the up-to-date live Sky Sports TV selections for the 2020/21 season HERE. This page will be updated throughout the season as and when selections are made.

Q. How do I watch live EFL matches or see highlights?

A. Throughout the 20/21 season, during the Coronavirus pandemic, fans have been able to watch an increased amount of matches via iFollow. In addition to this, due to an agreement between the EFL and Sky, season ticket holders have been able to access all of their teams matches (providing the Club has a streaming service, iFollow or equivalent) including those games being shown live on Sky Sports, with all home matches being included in the price of the season ticket.

Whilst stadiums are operating at zero or reduced capacity this option will be available supporters.

Q. What is iFollow?

A. iFollow is a subscription service that offers fans of EFL clubs all over the world the chance to stream games live in high definition, or listen to audio commentary. To read more click here.

Q. How do I report piracy? 

A. If you see any unauthorised streaming of an EFL League match, Carabao Cup or Papa John’s Trophy match please report it to piracy@efl.com. Where possible the link to the stream should be included, as this will assist in positive action being taken.

Q. Where can I find the EFL’s International Broadcast Partners?

A. To view the rights holders for both League and Cup coverage overseas please click here.

Q. How do I report abusive behaviour?

A. If you witness any form of abusive behaviour in the stadium, whether it be directed at a player/manager or at another member of the crowd then you can report this in numerous ways.

If you feel comfortable to contact your nearest steward then we would advise this is the first step you take as they will be able to provide immediate assistance or inform senior safety officials and police. You may also wish to contact your club post-match via their contact channels.

You can report an incident to Kick it Out, via their mobile app, which can be downloaded on IOS and Android devices. They also have a web reporting form which can be found here.

Q. What is a Supporter Liaison Officer?

A. Every club in the EFL has a Supporter Liaison Officer (SLO) whose responsibility is to act as a point of contact for supporters and liaise with the club's management with regard to supporter issues.

You can find a full list of all EFL Supporter Liaison Officers on our website here


Q. Who is the Independent Football Ombudsman?

A. The Independent Football Ombudsman (IFO) was established by the football authorities as the final stage in football’s complaints process. The IFO can check that a case has been fairly handled and that due process was followed. For any query or complaint relating to services provided by an EFL club, supporters should initially contact that club accordingly. Should a supporter remain dissatisfied they can refer the matter directly to the IFO at www.theifo.co.uk.

Q. What is Profit and Sustainability (P&S)?

A. The current set of ‘Profitability and Sustainability’ (P&S) regulations were implemented from the 2016/17 season. Their introduction aimed to deliver a consistent approach to Financial Fair Play for those clubs that move between the Premier League and Championship through promotion and relegation.

The ultimate aim of the P&S requirements, along with Salary Cost Management (SCMP) in League One and League Two are about ensuring that Clubs manage any permitted loses, and should any intervention from the EFL be required, they are supported to ensure they are on the correct trajectory in terms of projected finances.

P&S rules in the Championship are not purely a measure of overall debt but are a focus on sustainability and therefore look at reported losses within a specific period of time, over a rolling three season basis. Clubs have to adjust these losses to remain within the permitted threshold.

Our full regulations relating to Financial Fair Play and the Profit and Sustainability rules can be found on our website here.

Q. What is the Owners’ and Directors’ Test?

A. The EFL’s Owners’ and Directors’ test requirement sets out criteria for who is and who is not permitted to own a club or exercise control over it. The test requirements can be viewed here http://www.efl.com/global/appendix3.aspx.

Q. What technology do match officials use in EFL games?

A. Hawk-Eye Goal Decision System will again be in use across the EFL Championship this season following its successful implementation in 2017/18. The technology will also be used in all 12 fixtures of the EFL Play-Offs as well as in all Premier League and Championship grounds in the Carabao Cup. It will be used in both the Carabao Cup and Papa John’s Trophy Final

Video Assistant Referee (VAR) will be used in the Carabao Cup Semi-Finals and Final following the trial period which took place in 2018/19. VAR will not be implemented across the league matches or in the Papa John’s Trophy. EFL Referees also use microphones and headsets to communicate with each other during matches.

Q. Who can I contact with proposals and ideas related to laws of the game?

A. The International Football Association Board (IFAB) is the body which determines all Laws of the Game and sanctions any law changes. You can find contact information for IFAB at: http://www.theifab.com/contact.

The FA hold a seat on the board and inputs into the impact of changes to the Laws of the game domestically. If you have any queries regarding any such on-pitch matters we would advise to contact the FA or IFAB directly.

Q. Has the EFL issued protocols to players regarding on field conduct?

A. The EFL has issued all players with a ‘Participant Behaviour Brief’ and this can be found HERE. Along with protocols set by the EFL, all Clubs and Players are aware of their responsibilities in respect of the latest government guidance.

Q. Does the EFL carry out any Covid testing with Clubs?

A. The EFL carries out twice-weekly testing of all players and first team Club staff and all must return a negative result in order to enter a stadium and/or participate in any EFL fixtures.

Q: What happens when a Club’s playing surface is affected by adverse weather conditions ahead of a game?

A. In instances where there has been persistent rain, snowfall or low temperatures in the week leading up to a fixture, the home Club will have monitored weather reports and made plans to ensure that a pitch inspection can be made as efficiently as possible.

The home Club is required to make contact with the EFL and the match referee to inform them of the situation. The home Club will also liaise the visiting Club to inform them of the required pitch inspection so they can plan accordingly in regards to team and supporter travel. In some extreme cases, a pitch inspection can be made the day before the fixture.

The appointed match official will then report back to the EFL with his recommendation and a decision will be taken, based on his report.

Q: What happens when the playing surfaced is affected by adverse weather conditions on the day of the game?

A. Again, the home Club and the match referee are required to assess the latest weather reports and the Referee will make arrangements with both Clubs in regards to the time any inspection would take place.

In most cases inspections will take place as early as is practically possible, however the weather forecast is also taken into consideration, certainly if improvements are expected. The match referee will always try and give the fixture every chance to go ahead where possible, and in some instances there may be more than one inspection on the day of the game.

The match referee will always base his decision on the condition of the pitch at the time of inspection, but will also factor in any forecast improvements or otherwise and consult both managers/backroom staff of each Club. Ultimately however, the Referee’s decision is final in this scenario.

Q: Why are games postponed if the playing surface is playable?

A. It is the responsibility of each Club to ensure their stadium and car parks are safe to admit spectators on matchdays.

The home Club’s ground safety team will risk-assess the condition of the stadium footprint and the surrounding areas.  It may not always be possible to ensure the safety of spectators in the event of extreme low temperatures, snow, ice and treacherous conditions.

On the day of the fixture, the ground safety team would liaise with the region’s SAG (Safety Advisory Group) and talk through their concerns around the safety of supporters. The SAG would normally consist of the local policing authorities, the club’s ground safety team, local council members who specialise in different aspects of the community, and the ambulance service from that region.

The final decision would be out of the hands of the match referee on the day and would instead be based upon a recommendation from the Club’s Safety Advisory Group to the EFL.

Q: What happens if conditions around the stadium change in the lead up to kick-off?

A. The home team’s safety team along with the SAG team will continue to monitor conditions in the lead up to kick-off and will keep relevant parties informed regarding the safety of the stadium footprint.

Q: What can the club do to prevent the fixture from being postponed?

A. It is important that during periods of freezing conditions and heavy snowfall, Clubs make provisions to ensure the stadium, stadium footprint and its surrounds are in an appropriate condition to admit spectators.

This may include additional staff and/or volunteers to help clear snow or grit frozen surfaces. If the home club has any safety concerns ahead of a fixture they should make early contact with the EFL and the visiting team

Q. Can the EFL assist with charity requests/fundraising?

A. Due to the EFL’s official charity partnership with the mental health charity MIND, it is unable to support any additional charitable causes.

We would recommend contacting individual EFL clubs as they may well be able to support additional charitable objectives, or provide raffle prize items. You can view the list of clubs here.

You can also contact the national Mind team with any questions or requests for support via football@mind.org.uk.

Q. I’m interested in working for the EFL, where can I find information on vacancies?

A. You can find the jobs section of our website here https://www.efl.com/-more/jobs/. This includes details of any current opportunities at the EFL, along with selected vacancies at our member clubs, with details of how to apply found within each link.


Q. Can the EFL assist with student projects or research?

A. The EFL will endeavour to provide a response to specific queries, however due to the volume of requests received it is not usually possible to provide opportunities for interview. If you have any specific questions please contact us here.

Q. How do I get media accreditation for an EFL match or Final?

A. All applications for accredited journalists, photographers and broadcasters (non-rights holders) must be made via the Internet Press Booking System (i-PBS), which is accessed via the Football DataCo website, www.football-dataco.com. Single match requests should be directed to accreditations@football-dataco.com.