By Walter Broeckx
I think every person who follows football and who as a normal brain function will agree that the calender for football players is overfilled. Too much is too much. If you look at how many players have suffered injuries that have played on the world cup it is clear to see. The more players have to play and the longer the season lasts, the more injuries they will get. The less space there is between such tournaments and the league calender the more injuries they will suffer.
If Uefa or Fifa is serious about protecting the game they should be protecting the most valuable asset in the game: the players! People want to see the superstars play. They want to see Messi, Ronaldo, Özil, Hazard, Aguero,…. in action on the field. They don’t want to hear that they are injured for months.
If you look at the calender it is obvious that top players don’t get enough rest during the season and between seasons. In fact in years with a world cup there is no rest at all for a lot of them. While the world cup is still running the league in some countries is almost starting again. We had a lot of players just back in training when our official matches started.
So players have to be rushed back and as a result will get more injuries. And I haven’t event mentioned the risk of getting injured when playing for their national teams.
Untold Arsenal goes mad whenever we get another set of meaningless friendlies between countries that can only need to overloading players and getting them injured. So we have campaigned and it seems that from 2018 there will be no more meaningless friendlies.
So hurray?? Another moment where Untold campaigning resulted in the football authorities taking notice and doing something? Will the overload for players come to an end? Will the clubs be able to give their players more rest. Will Theo no longer come back injured when being called up for England matches after having been out for 10 months? Not so fast.
We are talking about institutions like Uefa and Fifa here.
Uefa has just made it public that from 2018 they meaningless friendlies will be …replaced by something else.
And that something else will be called the Nations League. A competition in which the 54 countries will be divided in to 4 divisions. And will play 6 matches between September till November 2018. And they can win extra tickets for world cups and European championship.
The 12 top teams from Europe will be in Division A, which will be divided into 4 groups with each 3 teams. And the 4 groupwinners will play a final phase in June 2019 with semi finals and a final. And the worst teams in the divisions will go down and the better teams from the lower division can make promotion.
So yeah what a joke. The summer of 2019 in which nothing was planned till now …will now be the moment we play another competition. Talking about reducing the workload for the top players….
And as we know that the FA’s are inventive now we will get the fact that before the teams have to play in that competition they will have to play…..meaningless friendlies. Because well how else can you prepare a team of course.
So we still will have meaningless friendlies. And maybe after all the workload will go even up for the players of the big teams and big countries.
Mr. Platini said: ‘This is a very important decision for the international football matches”. In other words: this is a very important day for Uefa to grab some more money on the expense of the clubs and the players.
So the name will change but the workload for players will not change for the good of their health. No, as the matches will be meaning-something we will even risk more injuries as managers will want to win and so they will play players that maybe shouldn’t play because they carry a knock. And at the end of the day they might be send back to their clubs completely injured.
Thus from 2018 on we will have no more real summer rest for some players. Every year they will have to play till somewhere in June or July. If not for the world cup, then for the European championship or for the new Nations League. And get not enough rest. And become more injured. But what do Uefa or Fifa care about that?
It’s the money they are after. They don’t care about clubs suffering from injured players. As long as they can grab their part of the money. That is all what matters form them.
In a way this reminded me of the Pink Floyd hit ‘another brick in the wall’. Where they shout at one moment: Hey teacher, leave those kids alone.
The Christmas books
- Woolwich Arsenal: The club that changed football – Arsenal’s early years
- Making the Arsenal – how the modern Arsenal was born in 1910
- The Crowd at Woolwich Arsenal
Some other sites from the Untold team (there is a full list on the home page)
- The Arsenal History Society
- UK Education News – the rolling news service
- Dyscalculia on line test and support
- The Direct Marketing blog: direct mail, email, websites, blogs
- The Secret Nurse : what is really going wrong with the NHS?
- Untold Dylan – the music, the lyrics, the meaning of Bob Dylan’s songs.
- What the media doesn’t tell you, part 6. There’s a financial problem…
- The Big 7 clubs, how much they spent and what good is it doing?
- What the media won’t tell you about football 5: Fifa lends money to Switzerland
- What the media won’t tell you about football, part 4 – referee variations
- The final transfer rumours: 3 new names to make 66 players tipped for Arsenal