J. C. [“Charles”] Thring, Uppingham School master laid the ‘the groundwork on which the [Football] Association code was built’. Thring’s rules for The Simplest Game, first published in 1862, and his call for a ‘football parliament’, in 1863, were both instrumental in the establishment of the modern game, and the Football Association, respectively. In a series of six meetings, between October and December, the ‘parliament’ examined the new Cambridge Rules, The Simplest Game as well as six more written submissions from Charles Thring, and thrashed out a common ‘Association’ code. Thring’s enthusiasm for the game spanned more than thirty years from the 1830s: playing at Winchester College and Shrewsbury School; playing, organising and codifying at St John’s College, Cambridge; teaching and codifying at Uppingham School; playing in Wiltshire; and advocating or disputing national initiatives through correspondence to newspapers. 

Thring’s Simplest Game rules, given below, were created as “an antidote to the Rugby game, which has unhappily been lately adopted by many clubs“, with the aim that “our Universities should adopt this or some similar code of laws“.

I. A goal is scored whenever the ball is forced through the goal and under the bar, except it be thrown by hand.

II. Hands may be used only to stop a ball and place it on the ground before the feet.

III. Kicks must be aimed only at the ball.

IV. A player may not kick the ball whilst in the air.

V. No tripping up or heel kicking allowed.

VI. Whenever a ball is kicked beyond the side flags, it must be returned by the player who kicked it, from the spot it passed the flag line in a straight line towards the middle of the ground.

VII. When a ball is kicked behind the line of goal, it shall be kicked off from that line by one of the side whose goal it is.

VIII. No player may stand within six paces of the kicker when he is kicking off.

IX. A player is ‘out of play’ immediately he is in front of the ball, and must return behind the ball as soon as possible. If the ball is kicked by his own side past a player, he may not touch or kick it, or advance, until one of the other side has first kicked it, or one of his own side, having followed it up, has been able, when in front of him, to kick it.

X.No charging allowed when a player is out of play; that is, immediately the ball is behind him.