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RN football
RN football


To develop football throughout the Naval service, to maximise participation at all levels, in all areas both on and off the field.

The Royal Navy Football Association (RNFA) is responsible for the administration and provision of football to all RN personnel. This is from the men's senior side down to the grass roots of football at ship and establishment level, and for both men and women alike. The representative sides of the Royal Navy are at the pinnacle of Royal Navy football, but we also facilitate competitive football at all levels throughout the Service.

The Navy's most prestigious competition is the Royal Navy Knockout Cup which is open to all Establishments, Ships and Royal Marine Units. This competition runs over the course of the season with the final being held in March. The Winners then go forward to represent the Royal Navy in the NAAFI Jubilee Cup, a trophy which is played for by the winners of each of the three Services Cups. There are also competitions exclusively for ships, which are administered separately by the Fleet Recreation Officer.

Between grass roots and representative level is the Inter Command competitions for both men and women which are held in September/October each year. It is here that the six Commands of the Royal Navy; Portsmouth, Plymouth, Scotland, Royal Marines, Naval Air Command and Fleet forward their strongest sides to play for the right to call themselves Inter Command Champions. The Command championship provides the vital stepping stone and opportunity for players to enjoy the challenges imposed by representative football.

The RNFA is one of the 51 County Football Associations within the Football Association and therefore has a very definite role to play in the evolution and development of the game in England. It is not only responsible for the development of players; but also for the recruiting, progress and development of coaches and referees for which there is a definite path and plan. The areas of coaching and officiating are crucial to the development as an association as without people to teach or officiate the game would fall behind other sports and start to lose its claim as the No 1 team and most popular sport in the Service.

It is the RNFA's aim to make best use of these developments for the improvement of service football. The RNFA offers a wide range of activities for all service personnel details of which are given below:

Player Development

The Royal Navy fields representative teams for:

  • Youth (up to U19)
  • Under 21
  • Women
  • Men

Courses are organised in a variety of areas for those who wish to coach, officiate or become involved with football.

These courses are:

  • Officiating
  • Basic Referees Course Level 7
  • Coaching and Medical
  • 1st4 Sport Level 1 Certificate in Coaching Football (FA)
  • 1st4 Sport Level 2 Certificate in Coaching Football (FA)
  • 1st4 Sport Level 3 Certificate in Coaching Football (FA)
  • 1st4 Sport Level 2 Basic Certificate in Treatment and Management of Injury (FA)

It is important to note that all FA courses now contain a 3 hour Child Protection Module.

Link to: Royal Marines Football Association