I could imagine that if run in private, a local County Association might just tolerate something unauthorised. If they tried to enforce bans, they might find themselves on the wrong side of the legal action as monopoly powers of a local FA probably lack a legal underpin.David Gilbert wrote: Indeed, I'm not sure how the County Association could have got hold of the names of the players and referees in order to ban them!
But if a league got to the stage of being reported in the press, names of both players and officials would become apparent and action could be taken.
There was almost a situation like this in the early years of the 4NCL. There had been a falling out between the 4NCL and the BCF such that the BCF was intending to set up its own official league. In the event, it never got beyond being a talking shop, but it did cause some BCF supporting teams to withdraw from that season's 4NCL. The BCF didn't really have the power to sanction or not sanction the 4NCL, less still ban players and arbiters who had taken part. But what if it had those powers? It could then have terminated the unofficial league to promote its own official league.