Return to Football

October 18th, 2021

This information was updated on Wednesday 20 October, reflecting an amendment to the Public Health Order which allows outdoor community sport gatherings of up to 1,000 fully vaccinated people. Visit our COVID-19 Portal for the latest information.

From today Monday, 18 October the Reopening NSW Roadmap’s 80 per cent settings will come into effect for those who are fully vaccinated.

What this means for the football community

For the fully vaccinated, community sport can return to play within the guidelines of the Public Health Order (PHO).

Outdoor recreation facilities

Organised community sport, including club training, trials, friendly and competition matches, may now take place provided that:

  • People aged 16 and over are fully vaccinated or have a valid medical exemption (medical certificate required). Note: There is no requirement for attendees aged under 16 to be vaccinated.

All clubs are expected to have a COVID-19 Safety Plan for all gatherings of the above nature.

As part of a COVID-19 Safety Plan:

  • A maximum of 200 people can attend.
  • Attendees must check-in using a Service NSW QR Code.
  • Premises will operate at a one person per 2sqm outdoors and one person per 4sqm indoors.
  • Any use of changerooms or communal facilities (e.g. gyms) are subject to the one person per 4sqm rule, and masks are required to be worn in all indoor settings.
  • Social distancing of 1.5 metre is required between spectators (e.g. parents).

Northern NSW Football recommends changerooms and/or wet areas be limited to players and team staff, with thorough cleaning taking place between users.

Northern NSW Football recommends that clubs nominate a jacketed official who will act as a COVID-19 Marshal at each training session. The Marshal’s role will be to remind people of their responsibilities to follow guidelines and PHOs.

All football activities remain subject to current local government area (LGA) guidelines and/or restrictions.

Indoor recreation facilities (e.g. Futsal)

The return of community sport will allow for the running of futsal training, trials, friendly and competition matches within an indoor recreation facility provided that:

  • People aged 16 and over must be fully vaccinated or must have a valid medical exemption (medical certificate required). There is no requirement for people aged under 16 to be vaccinated.
  • The occupier of the facility must not allow more than 20 people to attend a group activity at the facility, including but not limited to training, trials, friendly and competition matches.
  • Multiple group activities of up to 20 people may take place within an indoor recreation facility provided the facility complies with the PHO.
  • The occupier of the facility must not allow a total of more than one person per 4sqm.
  • The operator of the facility must have a ‘Gyms and indoor recreation’ COVID-19 Safety Plan in place.
  • The occupier of the premises must take reasonable steps to ensure that all participants check-in via the Service NSW App and that no unvaccinated adults (aged 16 years and over) are on the premises.

All indoor facilities require a mask to be worn unless engaged in physical exercise.


  • Clubs are expected to take all reasonable steps to ensure participants; are vaccinated, that they check-in using a Service NSW QR Code, and are compliant with the PHOs. Read the NSW government fact sheet on ‘Vaccination compliance and obligations’ for more information.
  • It is also the responsibility of those participating in any gathering to comply with the vaccination or medical exemption requirements and to obey the PHOs at all times.
  • Volunteers must not get involved in confrontations or be subjected to physical or verbal abuse for trying to keep participants safe and compliant. If individuals are not complying with the PHOs, it is a matter for the police.


  • Northern NSW Football insurances only apply to sanctioned football activities while those activities and while participants are compliant with the PHOs.
  • Participants who are injured while participating during a sanctioned football activity are covered by the Northern NSW Football’s personal injury insurance for injuries sustained as a result of football participation (subject to policy terms and conditions). However, claims related to COVID-19 are an exclusion under our policies.

Yours sincerely,

Northern NSW Football

*Please note this is subject to changes in the Public Health Order.

Related Topics:
80 per cent October 18 2021 Return to Football

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