Doping Controls


In order to make sure football stays clean, random doping controls are conducted.

This means testing players’ blood and/or urine to make sure they are not using any prohibited substances or methods.

FIFA’s Anti-Doping Unit manages the anti-doping programme for all FIFA competitions and can ask players to take part in a doping control at any time.

The main focus is on players who are in FIFA’s international registered testing pool (IRTP) and who are either taking part in or preparing for a competition.


If a player is selected for a doping control in competition, here is what they can expect:

  1. After the final whistle, a chaperone will greet the player as they leave the pitch and let them know that they have been selected for a doping control.

  2. The chaperone will then escort the player to the doping control room along with a representative of their team. From the moment they are notified until the moment they leave the doping control room, the player will be kept under observation.

  3. Unless there is a valid reason for a delay, the player needs to report immediately to the doping control room. Valid reasons are: · victory ceremonies; · giving post-match flash interviews; or · if the player has approval from the doping control officer (DCO).

  4. If the player has a valid reason, they still need to stay under the observation of the chaperone or the DCO until the end of their doping control.

  5. When they get to the doping control room, the player will need to present their accreditation or identity card.

  6. The DCO will talk the player through the whole process and answer any questions they might have.

  7. The DCO will inform the player about their rights and responsibilities. At this point, they will need to sign the “Notification of selected player” part of the doping control form to state that they understand everything.

  8. After this notification process, the player will be given time to prepare for sample collection.

  9. The DCO will then take urine or blood samples, or both.

Here is what else you should know

If a player is under 18 years old, they should be notified in the presence of an adult and have the right to be accompanied by a representative throughout the sample collection session.

If a player fails to submit a sample or refuses, evades or tampers with any part of a doping control, it counts as an anti-doping rule violation and can result in them being banned for up to four years.

  1. The doping control officer (DCO) will explain the process and check that the player is ready to provide a sample. Sometimes it can take a while to “go”, so the player should relax, take their time and rehydrate.

  2. When the player is ready, they and the DCO should check that the sample collection equipment is sealed and intact. At this point, they should pick out a urine beaker from a random selection of three.

  3. In the bathroom, the DCO will show the player exactly how to open and close the beaker so as to avoid any contamination.

  4. Before the sample collection, the player will be asked to wash their hands with water. Alternatively, they can choose to wear gloves.

  5. The DCO needs to clearly see the player provide the urine sample. This means that they will need to remove or adjust any clothing obscuring the DCO’s view, so that the player’s underpants are below their knees and their shirt is above the chest.

  6. The player needs to provide a minimum of 90ml for the urine sample.

  7. Once they have filled the beaker, the player should pick out a sample collection kit and pour their sample evenly into the bottles labelled A and B, sealing them when finished. The DCO will explain this in more detail.

  8. Finally, the DCO will check and sign the player’s doping control form, giving them a copy for their records.

What happens next?

After the doping control, the player’s sample will be sent to a WADA-accredited laboratory for analysis.

  1. Before taking the sample and while the player cools down after the match or training session, a blood collection officer (BCO) will explain and check that the player understands the process, as well as ask them a few questions about their health.

  2. After the player has picked out a blood sample kit, the BCO will disinfect the spot on the player’s (non-dominant) arm where they will draw blood.

  3. The BCO will draw just enough blood for testing.

  4. If it is difficult to get enough blood for the sample, the process will be repeated a maximum of two more times. If it is still not possible to get a full sample, the BCO will simply end the test and write up a report. In this case, the player should not worry as there will be no negative consequences.

  5. The player can decide whether to seal the blood collection vessels themself or to let the BCO do it – in any case, the BCO will check that they are sealed.

  6. The doping control officer will check and sign the player’s doping control form, giving them a copy for their records.

What happens next?

The player should avoid exercise for at least 30 minutes to minimise any potential bruising.

The player’s blood sample will be placed in a cooling device and then sent to a WADA-accredited laboratory for analysis.

All Anti-Doping

What constitutes doping?

Doping is when players take prohibited substances or use prohibited methods to improve their performance.

Therapeutic Use Exemptions (TUE)

If players have a legitimate medical reason for using a prohibited substance or method that is on the list, they may be accommodated if they meet the criteria outlined in the International Standard for Therapeutic Use Exemptions (ISTUE).

Doping Controls

In order to make sure football stays clean, random doping controls are conducted.

Player and Player Support Personnel Responsibilities

As a player, you have a number of responsibilities when it comes to anti-doping matters.

FIFA Anti-Doping Regulations 2021

The revised FIFA Anti-Doping Regulations (FIFA ADR), which apply as of 1 January 2021. While retaining their core principles and proven processes, the revised FIFA ADR include the changes from the new World Anti-Doping Code as well as important updat...


If you are selected for a doping control, you might have a few questions.