Eleven rules to prevent doping in football

To make it as easy as possible for players to adhere to anti-doping rules, FIFA developed “11 Rules to Prevent Doping in Football”.


These contain useful tips such as checking the list of prohibited substances, avoiding social drugs, exercising extreme care when taking supplements and applying for therapeutic use exemptions for certain illnesses.

1. Doping is cheating

Doping is cheating. Respect your team-mates and your sport, but most of all respect yourself. The real winner is the one who has played by the rules.

2. Get informed

Find out about doping, so that you can have a long career. Consult your team doctor or databases such as the Global Drug Reference Online (www.globaldro.com). Always double-check any medication: even when it is prescribed by your doctor, not every physician is aware of the FIFA Anti-Doping Regulations and WADA’s World Anti-Doping Code.

3. Check WADA’s prohibited list

WADA’s prohibited list is a vital tool for all athletes and describes the substances (and classes of medication) and methods that are banned. Always check the list before taking any medication. If you have any doubts, contact your national anti-doping organisation.

4. Focus on good nutrition

A balanced and healthy diet can improve performance and provide all the nutrients and energy you need.

5. Be very careful with supplements

Be careful with supplements and avoid them if you are not 100% sure about their contents. Supplements might contain prohibited substances, either due to contamination or deliberate spiking. You are responsible for what you take and you may face sanctions. Never take substances or supplements without consulting a doctor, and do everything to reduce the risk of inadvertent doping.

6. Do not risk your career

It is against the rules to make, sell, buy or attempt to traffic any prohibited substance or method, or to possess, administer or attempt to administer any prohibited substance or method.

7. Avoid social drugs

Social drugs such as marijuana and cocaine are a threat to your health and could harm your career as well as your personal life. Both of these substances are prohibited by WADA for in-competition periods, but marijuana may remain in your body for many weeks after use.

8. Anabolic steroids are harmful

Anabolic steroids often lead to hair loss, severe acne, shrinking testicles, the development of breasts in males, early heart disease, and potentially dangerous psychological side effects.

9.Don’t forget your whereabouts

Whereabouts are an important element in catching cheaters and keeping sport clean. Remember to make yourself available for testing when required at a given time and place, seven days a week, as well as at all training sessions and competitions. If you miss a test three times in one year, you could face disciplinary action. If you are in a registered testing pool, you must submit your whereabouts.

10. Never refuse a test or tamper with a sample

The falsification, exchange or destruction of a test sample and evading, refusing or failing to submit to sample collection is a violation of the rules.

11. Therapeutic use exemption

If you have a significant health problem, you may be apply to apply for a therapeutic use exemption to use a prohibited substance or method. The treatment must not improve your performance beyond a return to normal and there must be no other alternative treatment available.