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By Walter Broeckx
Is football going to change in the near future?
If it depends on the European Club Association it will. The ECA is an organisation from the biggest clubs in Europe and Arsenal is a member of this organisation as are most of the top clubs in England and in Europe.
Karl Heinz Rummenige, the former star of German football and Bayern Munche, who is president of the ECA has said that the calendar has to change in the future and that they will hold talks on this matter with Fifa and Uefa.
The European Clubs Association have also vowed to speak to Uefa about the number of international friendlies and compensation for injuries picked up on duty.
ECA president Karl-Heinz Rummenigge demanded the introduction of an insurance policy and an end to the “nonsense” games that see players get injured.
He said: “The total income made by Fifa in a World Cup is thanks to our players, paid by our clubs.
“I believe it is quite fair that we take a certain part of the big cake. The cake is always getting bigger and bigger, we’re not speaking about millions, we’re speaking about billions and I ask Fifa as an act of solidarity… to take the risk of this insurance policy.”
Bayern Munich has suffered a lot from the injury Arjan Robben got when he was with Holland before the world cup. They prepared him for the tournament and then when he came back Bayern found out that his injury was far worse than they knew. Add also the fact that the Dutch football federation did not allow the Bayern doctor to have a look at the injury at the time he got his injury.
Rumenige said: “It was a classic case,Ppior to the World Cup he was injured, he came back in a worse condition and now we have to pay the bill… we still have to pay the monthly salary.”
Rummenigge also wants to do something about the number of friendly games that are played.
He added: “We have decided that we will intervene much more in the future in the international match calendar. “The federations such as Fifa have to recognise that the players are our employees, so we have to be more involved in this kind of matter which in the past unfortunately was not always the case. The August friendly date is nonsense, especially in a year where the players are coming back from a World Cup.”
And if I may add: the November friendly was as ridiculous as the August friendly games.
So the ECA wants an insurance policy paid by Fifa so the clubs don’t have to pay the bill when their players get injured in international games. And they want to have a word in the way the international calendar is made.
The ECA also wants some kind of formal way of action when a player gets injured while on duty for his country so that the club doctors can see the player. So when a player gets injured the club doctors should be able to see their player and look at the injuries themselves. So we could prevent the Vermaelen situation where he played his last game for Belgium with an Achilles injury and by doing so it got worse. The Belgium team doctors knew the risk but they let him play anyway and Arsenal paid the price.
And according to the media in my country Rummenige came with the proposal for the football calendar and the ECA wants to play club football for 8 months and in this period the CL and also the Europa league should be played. Then a period of 2 months for international football. Then a holiday period of one month and then the clubs had a preparation period of 1 month.
And somehow this comes very close to what I have written and proposed on this site a few months back. http://blog.emiratesstadium.info/archives/7619 Now I don’t know if I should claim the rights for this idea or not? Back to serious thoughts now.
Commenting on the resolution Karl-Heinz Rummenigge said: “Everyone is so busy in securing additional dates for this or that competition and we forget that the players are often the same and they are stretched to the limit increasing the risk of injuries. A harmonised calendar and a clear insurance policy will be one of our main goals and this could help further to harmonize the relationship between club football and national team football.”
And I really hope that the ECA can make it so far. It feels rather good to be on the same wave length as the ECA and maybe more important is that Rummenige also said that they hoped they would reach a consensus with Fifa and Uefa but in case that agreement wouldn’t be reached, that ECA is considering of going to court in order to get a court ruling on this which would make Fifa and Uefa have to accept the desires of the clubs.
So who knows, a new Bosman-court ruling in the making but with very important consequences for Uefa and Fifa and will they have to accept and listen to the demands and desires of the clubs. I will keep you informed when I read something about it.
Want to argue against Wenger and his policy? Then you must read this first, or your comment may not be published
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