How Much Control Does the Football Association Have Over the Premier League?


Oftentimes, the Football Association steps into Premier League matters in a high-profile way, but what is the exact sharing of power between the English FA and the Premier League?

First the basics: the FA is in charge of football from amateur to professional football in England. It is a regulatory body that sets many of the rules of the game. The FA is also a member of FIFA and UEFA, thus representing England on the international stage of football bureaucracy.

On the other hand, the Premier League is essentially a business and deals with the commercial aspects of the game, from branding and TV deals to sponsorship and league prize money.


The Football Association deals with various high-profile matters in the Premier League, including handing out punishments to players and clubs for on and off-field incidents. They are also a shareholder in the Premier League and can vote on certain issues, although they do not have the final say.

While the Premier League can draw up its own rules, those rules have to be submitted to the FA for approval. The FA can also veto the appointment of any League Chairman or Chief Executive, giving the regulatory body some power over the league.

Throughout its history, the FA has had its fair share of controversies and in recent years lost trust among many Premier League clubs for scandals within FIFA.

The Premier League has also grown immensely in power compared to the interests within the lower English leagues thanks to a massive influx in TV money and world prestige.

The above two factors led to a reshuffle at the FA in 2017, with its opponents successfully arguing the governing body was antiquated and ill-equipped to handle the runaway power of the Premier League and hot-button issues in football, including racism and sexism.

A reform introduced short term limits for FA board members, and three spots for women on the 10-person board.

Shared Interests?

While the two organizations are advancing football in England, at times the organizations don’t see eye-to-eye.

The Premier League is solely focused on the success of the top-flight in English football, and the FA is concerned with all levels.

With a massive influx in cash has come more foreign players and youngsters, both of which have pushed out some of England’s best young talent and made it difficult for top English players to find regular game time at top clubs.

With this said, the Premier League has taken English football to the next level in terms of facilities, prestige, and quality of play.

In the end, the Football Association has a significant say in the Premier League game, but as the league grows in popularity and power, the Premier League has more opportunity to throw its weight around.

Premier League clubs also are becoming significant powers in their own right; however, they are subject to rules from both the FA and the Premier League.


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