There is no game of football without a referee, it’s at times a thankless task but equally given the right training can be a very rewarded one, match officials are often front row for some of the best goals, set pieces and brilliant moments of football. Referees perform a vital role in the game, and with the growth in the popularity of football, particularly for women and children, the demand for match officials is increasing.

At the Amateur FA our Referee Development Team make it out aim to produce, support and enable a small army of highly motivated and immensely talented, FA qualified referees!

The Amateur FA supports the work of around 340 affiliated match officials, all of whom are dedicated to the grassroots game as much as they are to their own personal development.

Our referees are recruited, trained and examined to enable a smooth grassroots operation. As they gain experience further opportunities are provided to aid their development and progression. Appointments are made to adult and youth County Cup ties, together with games in certain FA competitions.

This work is coordinated by the Association’s Referee Development Officer, Deryll David, who leads teams of volunteers working as tutors, examiners, mentors, coaches and observers, etc. 

If you’d like to know more, please contact or ring 0208 733 2613 and speak with our Referee Development Officer (RDO) Deryll David. 

Become a Referee

Thinking of becoming a referee?

  • Refereeing is a great way to be involved in football
  • There are opportunities for everyone
  • Remain active in the game following injury or retirement
  • Make new and lasting friends within the game
  • Play a huge role in ensuring the players enjoy their match day experience
FA Grassroots Referees

Development & Courses

At the AFA we offer a number of referee development opportunities throughout the year for officials at all stages of their journey; from those looking to become qualified referees to those climbing the promotion ladder.

For Referee Development opportunities please contact Deryll on

To book onto a Referee course, contact

find a course

A helping Hand

Refereeing Support

Every referee starts out at the bottom of a ladder, looking to learn and develop their skills throughout their refereeing career. Most are looking for promotion, some with modest targets; some perhaps even with the hope of eventually refereeing in a World Cup Final.