In Brief

Red and yellow cards for managers and coaches

New FA rules will include cautions for misconduct on the sidelines

The English Football Association (FA) is cracking down on touchline misconduct in the coming season.

It has announced in a statement that managers and coaching staff could receive red and yellow cards “for misconduct committed in the technical area during specific competitions”. 

The BBC reports that in the Premier League this season verbal warnings will be given for “irresponsible behaviour”, but red and yellow cards will be shown in the Football League, FA Cup, EFL Cup, EFL Trophy and National League. 

The FA statement said: “This trial follows a review by the English game’s stakeholders of the pre-existing technical area code of conduct, which was established in 2015 and sets out the behaviours expected of occupants of the technical area and establishes how the match officials will implement the code.

“Touchline staff will receive disciplinary action for accumulated ‘stage one warnings’.” 

How it will work

Stage one warnings and punishments 
  • 4 stage one warnings: one-match ban 
  • 8 stage one warnings: two-match ban 
  • 12 stage one warnings: three-match ban 
  • 16 stage one warnings: misconduct charge (sanction to be determined by a regulatory commission)
What is a stage one warning?

According to the FA, irresponsible behaviour includes but is not limited to: 

  • Inappropriate language and/or gestures towards the match officials 
  • Kicking or throwing water bottles, coats or other similar objects in an obvious show of dissent 
  • Sarcastic clapping and/or other gestures 
  • Entering the opponents’ technical area in an inappropriate manner 
  • Gesturing [or] waving an imaginary yellow/red card


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