International break: An indictment on FIFA and UEFA? - We take a look at how the fixture congestion is affecting players.
|Nathan Ake became the latest injury casualty after limping off against Spain in their 1-1 friendly on Wednesday (Photo credit: FIFA.com)|
“We’re simply puppets for both FIFA and UEFA… It is simply pushing players to new physical limits” Toni Kroos on the packed fixture list for both club and country
Fans, observers, and stakeholders want football played every day, we want entertainment all the time, and considering the fact that most can’t even get to watch from the stands since the advent of Corona Virus, it’s important that we get to see something fresh on our screens.
As much as we want this, what is the impact on the gladiators?
The players that give us joy, frustrations sometimes but in all, it’s part of the beautiful game, do we think about them?
Is it sustainable to play every day of the week and not burn out?
Let’s have the conversation!
Liverpool’s Joe Gomez, on Wednesday, tore a ligament in his knee in training with Gareth Southgate’s England squad and could face a lengthy time on the sideline.
This heaps more misery on Jurgen Klopp who now has to plan without Van Dijk, Fabinho, and Gomez.
Elsewhere on Wednesday, same scenario, different player, Nathan Ake had to be withdrawn early in the 1-1 friendly with Spain after suffering thigh muscle problems.
He is expected to return to Manchester today for assessment and rehabilitation, now the question: are international friendlies worth it?
Everyone is asking today, why there weren’t enough collective thinking in the creation of the football calendar that packed games for clubs and countries without factoring the health of the players and the impact of congested fixtures on the game itself.
France fielded a weakened side in their shock outing against Finland in Paris for a reason, Didier Deschamps won’t want to risk legs ahead of matches that actually matter but should there have been friendlies at this time at all?
Three games in a week for these players already proved catastrophic with Frank de Boer leading the dissent after losing two players in one night against Spain; “we have to look into the calendar, I don’t think these games are necessary, money is important but we have to look after the players” he said after the stalemate with Spain.
Clubs are also struggling to keep up, three champions league games in three weeks, flanked by league games and domestic cups.
Considering how shortened the season is after the COVOD-19 lockdown, FIFA and UEFA must work out a more reasonable calendar for 2021 and it must put players first.