Report from The FA Board’s Latest Meeting on 26 May 2022

Friday 27 May 2022
The FA's Board met on Thursday 26 May

Our Board met on Thursday 26 May, and set out below are the main discussion points.

The women’s professional game continues to go from strength to strength as evidenced by a record breaking crowd of 49,094 at the Vitality Women’s FA Cup Final earlier this month. Our Director of Women’s Football, Sue Campbell, and Director of the Women’s Professional Game, Kelly Simmons, led the Board through plans for the development of the Barclays FA Women’s Super League and FA Women’s Championship. Both leagues are currently managed within The FA and the longer term plan will be to transfer ownership to the clubs. As we transition to this, we are proposing to establish a new corporate entity as a wholly owned subsidiary of The FA, providing the clubs with more direct influence in the structure, which we believe gives the best chance for the leagues to thrive whilst allowing time to build the long-term model.

The return of spectators to stadia post the pandemic has been a welcome sight around grounds at all levels of the game, but this has been accompanied by unacceptable examples of crowd misconduct, including missile throwing, pyrotechnics and pitch incursions. Our Director of Legal and Governance, Polly Handford, and Head of On-Field Regulation, Tarik Shamel, presented on the current rules available to deal with incidents of crowd disorder and how such rules must be strengthened. The Board was fully supportive of the principle of strengthening the rules, acting with speed to be able to deploy tougher sanctions, and recognised the need for The FA, leagues, PFA and supporters’ organisations to work together in addressing these issues.

The Board continued its discussion on the recommendations arising from the Fan-Led Review of Football Governance. One of the concerns of the review was the protection of clubs’ heritage assets such as stadia, colours and crests, and it called on The FA to provide additional protections for these key items of club heritage and to prioritise the voice of supporters in any related decisions. Polly Handford and our Head of Legal, Bryan Faulkner, took the Board through how such rules may be drafted and the approval process should a club wish to change any of its key heritage assets. It also continued to discuss the structure of an independent regulator and the proposal to replace the funding formula with Board approved investment principles.

By FA Staff