Frequently Asked Questions

In General

What is Fairplay?

We will do our very best to give you the most competitive fixtures we can. By that we mean we will pair you with teams of similar ability where both teams will need to play at their very best in order to win. Sometimes we get this wrong or other circumstances mean that one team may not be performing at its best.

Fairplay is about recognising that the teams are not fairly matched and instead of pressing on regardless until the final whistle with a game that is not benefiting the development of either team, both team’s coaching staff look at ways to change the game so that both teams continue to benefit from the experience.

It does not mean that one team should add players or the other should take players off in the hope that this will even up the teams. It requires creative thinking by both sets of coaches working together to come up with training ground routines that can be inserted into the game to add new challenges so that both teams can develop their skills at the appropriate level.

How does the BMSL work?

The BMSL pr0vides four seasons in one. Each mini-season lasts for 7 weeks with one or two weeks between each where fixtures will not be scheduled. Each team in the BMSL can expect to have between 20 and 28 scheduled fixtures in a full season.

We operate a ladder at each age group, which sees teams split into ability groups where the teams play each other once during a mini-season. At the end of the mini-season, each team’s performance is studied, and where necessary teams move up or down the ladder so that they can find more competitive games.

When are matches played?

Matches are played on Sunday morning. Our normal kick-off time is 10.30 am, although teams can agree to play at other times if the home team has to share their pitch with other teams.

How long is a game?

Game playing time at Under 7 and Under 8 is 40 minutes while playing time at Under 9 and Under 10 is 50 minutes. Team administrators can agree to reduce the amount of playing time if it is in the best interest of the players. Games must not exceed these maximum playing times.

Where do your teams come from?

The vast majority of our clubs, as the name would suggest, come from within Bedfordshire. We can also have clubs that are located in Buckinghamshire, Cambridgeshire, or Hertfordshire.

What size should the pitch be?

The pitches for Under 7 and Under 8 should be between 30 yards and 40 yards long and between 20 yards and 30 yards wide.

The pitches for Under 9 and Under 10 should be between 50 yards and 60 yards long and between 30 yards and 40 yards wide.

Where a marked pitch is too big, cones or other suitable markers can be used to reduce the size of the pitch to acceptable parameters.

Where a suitably marked pitch is unavailable, cones or other suitable markers can be used to mark the boundaries of the playing area.

What size should the goals be?

The recommended size of goals is no larger than 12′ x 6′. We have no objection to other sizes being used so long as they are safe and the same for both teams. We also do not object to jumpers being used as goalposts. 🙂

What size should the ball be?

As per FA rules, all ages must use a size 3 ball.

From Parents

Why do I have to register on WHOLE GAME?

You will need to register on WHOLE GAME so that you can provide consent for your child to play football. Without your consent, your club will not be able to register your child with the BMSL. You will need to link your account to that of your child so that your contact details are easily accessible in case of an emergency.

It is important that your child is registered with the BMSL so that we can make sure that they are playing with children of the appropriate age. In addition, if your child is not registered with the BMSL, this may invalidate the personal insurance that your club has taken out should your child suffer a serious injury while playing football.

Why do I have to register my child on WHOLE GAME?

You will need to register your child on WHOLE GAME so that your club can register your child with the BMSL. You will need to link your child’s account to your account so that you can provide consent for your child to play football. This will ensure that your club has access to any relevant medical information relating to your child as well as your contact details in case of an emergency.

It is important that your child is registered with the BMSL so that we can make sure that they are playing with children of the appropriate age. In addition, if your child is not registered with the BMSL, this may invalidate the personal insurance that your club has taken out should your child suffer a serious injury while playing football.

How do I register on WHOLE GAME?

You and your child will need to register on WHOLE GAME. Once registered your club will register your child with the League so that they are able to play.

From Players

No FAQs Found

From Team Administrators

Where can I see my fixtures?

Your fixtures are available on FULL-TIME or in the MATCHDAY app. In addition, you will receive a FULL-TIME email on Monday when you have a fixture scheduled for the following Sunday.

If there are any changes made to the fixture, you will receive a FULL-TIME email.

What am I not receiving FULL-TIME fixture emails?

If you are not receiving the fixtures email from FULL-TIME you should:

  1. Make sure that they are not being sent to your junk folder.
  2. Check that you have the correct email on your WHOLE GAME account.
  3. Verify your email address in FULL-TIME using the menu option: Email > Email Address Verification.

If this does not resolve the problem, please contact us so that we can investigate.

Why do my contact details not appear on the FULL-TIME fixture emails?

If your contact details do not appear on the FULL-TIME fixture email, this will be because you are not flagged as the primary Team Administrator for the team. Only one person’s contact details per team can be shown in the email. If you would like to be that person, please contact us to let us know.

As the home Team Administrator, when do I need to confirm a fixture by?

The home team must contact and confirm the fixture with the away team by Tuesday evening no later than 9.00 pm.

Ideally, confirmation should be done in person over the phone. If you need to leave a voice mail make sure you ask your opposition to confirm receipt of your call. Likewise, make sure that you get confirmation of receipt if you use text or instant messenger.

If you have not confirmed the fixture by Thursday, the away team is free to make other arrangements.

Where can I find the contact details to confirm my fixture?

Team administrators will receive an email from ULL-TIME every Monday detailing their fixtures for the next 7 days. This email will have the contact details for the opposition team.

 

Alternatively, a list of contacts can be found on Microsoft Teams.

What do I do if the home team has not confirmed the fixture?

The home team must confirm arrangements with the away team by Tuesday 9.00 pm. If they have not confirmed arrangements with you, you should try to contact the club secretary of the home team to find out the arrangements.

If you have been unable to confirm arrangements with the home club by Thursday, you are free to assume the fixture will not go ahead and make alternative arrangements if you wish to do so. If alternative arrangements are made you should log in to FULL-TIME and cancel the fixture. If you have arranged an alternative fixture you must let us know by emailing the details to fixtures@bmsl.org.uk.

If the home team contacts you subsequently, the decision as to whether the fixture takes place is at your discretion.

How do I get FULL-TIME Match Result SMS texts?

To be added in as an SMS result contact in FULL-TIME, you will first need to have your mobile number listed on your WHOLE GAME account. You can check this by selecting the “my account” tab on the left. If you need to enter your mobile number click edit details under your photograph.

You will also need to be listed as a Team Official.

You should then contact us so that we can set you up to receive a text at the start of each fixture.

How do I notify the result of a fixture?

You must notify us of your result so that we can monitor your progress and if necessary make adjustments to the teams you are playing in order to provide you with the most competitive games possible.

Results can be notified by using one of the following methods:

  1. Recording each goal during the game using the MATCHDAY app.
  2. Logging into FULL-TIME after the match and selecting the menu option: Result > Fast Result Entry.
  3. Replying to the FULL-TIME Match Result SMS text.

 

How do I submit a Match Report?

After each fixture, you are required to submit a match report. This can be done in FULL-TIME or via the MATCHDAY app.

How do I postpone or cancel a game?

As soon as you know that you are unable to fulfill a fixture you must inform your opposition so that they can make alternative arrangements if they wish.

You must also postpone the fixture using FULL-TIME or the MATCHDAY app. If your match is canceled at the last minute, you can also reply to the FULL-TIME Match Result SMS text.

You can reschedule postponed fixtures to one of the weeks between mini-seasons if your opposition agrees otherwise, the fixture will be canceled. If you do reschedule a game please let us know by emailing fixtures@bmsl.org.uk.

Can my team play up a year?

Yes, although we do not encourage it. If your team is unable to find competitive games at the highest level in their age group, we can discuss whether it would be in the players’ best interest to move up an age group.

Please note that any players in the team who are themselves playing up a year will no longer be able to play for the team.

From Club Administrators

Can I add a team after the season has started?

Yes, we will accept new teams throughout the season.

You will need to affiliate the team with your County FA. Once the team is available in FULL-TIME we will be able to provide fixtures.

How much will it cost to enter a team?

The entry fee for a full season is £40 per team.

The entry fee for teams joining after New Year is £20 per team.

Clubs will be invoiced once the team has been affiliated with your County FA and is ready to start playing fixtures.

Do we need to be a Charter Standard club?

Yes, as a Charter Standard league, member clubs need to be FA accredited. If your club is not FA accredited you may still enter teams on the understanding that you apply for accreditation before they start playing.

Once accredited, you will need to undertake an annual health check to maintain your accreditation.

Will I need to pay a deposit?

No, we do not require a club deposit on joining.

How many players can I register to a team?

There are no limits to the number of players that can be registered to a team. However, we ask that you only take the FA permitted squad size to a game so that each player can get a minimum of half the available game time.

For Under 7 and Under 8, the maximum match day squad size is 10 players.

For Under 9 and Under 10, the maximum match day squad size is 14 players.

Do we need to register our players?

Yes, you will need to register your players via the Whole Game System before they play.

For the season 2021/2022, it will be a requirement for all affiliated football to register players, with an email address.

Can I register a player to more than one team?

Yes, a player can be registered to any number of teams within your club, so long as they meet the age restrictions for the team’s age group.

Will the BMSL allocate pitches?

No, each club is responsible for securing its own pitch allocation.

Do I need to pay a player registration fee?

No, we do not charge a fee to register players.

About WHOLE GAME

What is WHOLE GAME?

From team managers and club secretaries through to players and parents, Whole Game is for the whole of grassroots football. Whatever your role in the game and whatever you do, Whole Game can help you to do it faster and more effectively.

You’ll find club data – such as player contacts, qualifications, discipline records and so much more all in one place, which is great news for managers and club secretaries when it comes to club admin and monitoring player availability.

You only have to input a player’s details once – and the system fully integrates with both Full-Time and the Matchday app to make access and management of information simple.

Find out more…

You can also visit the FA's Grassroots Technology Support for further advice and assistance.

About FULL-TIME

What is FULL-TIME?

FULL-TIME is the easy way we manage the football league online. It works in conjunction with TheFA, the County website, and Whole Game. Scores, player stats, league and referee marks can be entered by team admins online.

For Managers on the go, our SMS service allows scores to be submitted via a simple text message, but only through The FA Matchday app can managers enter live score updates, alongside entering a wide selection of player stats as well as providing league, pitch quality and referee marks. We also provide tools to postpone or cancel games.

Find out more…

How do I get a FULL-TIME login?

If you already have a FULL-TIME account you do not need to do anything as this account will be automatically linked to your BMSL team. If you do not have a FULL-TIME account, one will be automatically created when your club’s County FA affiliation is approved. You will get an email from FULL-TIME inviting you to log in and complete your account setup. If you have not seen this email please check your junk mail folder.

What do I do if I don’t have an account set-up email from FULL-TIME ?

If you have not received an email from FULL_TIME inviting you to log in and complete your FULL-TIME account set-up, you will need to do the following:

  1. Make sure that your club secretary has set you up with one of the following roles in WHOLE GAME:
    • Manager
    • Manager (asst)
    • Team Secretary
  2. You must also ensure that your email address (personal) and mobile phone number are correct and up to date in WHOLE GAME.
  3. Once you have verified that the above conditions have been met, drop us a note and we will get you sorted.

What do I do if I have forgotten my FULL-TIME password?

If you have a FULL-TIME account but have forgotten your password, you will need to reset your password. Remember that your username will be the same email you use to sign into WHOLE GAME.

You can also visit the FA's Grassroots Technology Support for further advice and assistance.

About MATCHDAY

What is MATCHDAY?

It’s time to boot out all the boring admin around organising your football. TheFA’s official Matchday app has been developed specifically to automate everything around your football life – whether you’re a player, club secretary, manager or coach.

Who’s in the team? Who are the opponents? Where’s the game? When’s kick-off? Is anyone currently suspended? With Matchday, all the answers are instantly available at your fingertips.

Find out more…

You can also visit the FA's Grassroots Technology Support for further advice and assistance.

About Microsoft Teams

What is Microsoft Teams?

Microsoft Teams is the chat-based workspace in Office 365 that integrates all the people, content, and tools the BMSL community needs to be more engaged and effective. All Club and Team Administrators are guests of the BMSL team, and as a guest you will be able to participate in teams and channels, receive and respond to channel messages, access files in channels, participate in chats, join meetings, collaborate on documents, plus more.

How do I join Microsoft Teams?

As a guest of the BMSL MS Teams, you will receive a welcome email from the League Secretary, with information about the team and what to expect now that you are a member, which you will need to accept. Those that have a work or school account in Azure Active Directory can accept the invitation and authenticate directly. Others will be sent a one-time pass code to validate their identity (One-time passcode authentication required). After accepting the invitation, will be able to participate in teams and channels, receive and respond to channel messages, access files in channels, participate in chats, join meetings, collaborate on documents, plus more.

What do I do if I haven’t received an invitation to join teams?

Firstly you should check your junk email folder. If the invitation cannot be found and you have a Microsoft account, you just need to log in and go to the Microsoft Teams website.

If you do not have a Microsoft account you can create one using your email (please note this should be the same email you use for WHOLE GAME.