FA asks Premier League to stop Big Six playing on weekend before World Cup
FA asks Premier League to ensure Big Six clubs, including Liverpool, Manchester United and Chelsea, do not play on the weekend before the World Cup starts in Qatar to give England the best chance of winning the trophy
- Gareth Southgate came up with the idea of banning Big Six fixtures in March
- Now the FA has formally requested that the Premier League let them out of the schedule over the weekend before the World Cup in Qatar starts
- ESPN reported that the FA filed the application before the matches are agreed
The football association has asked the Premier League not to schedule matches between the top ‘Big Six’ clubs just before the World Cup in Qatar.
The formal application, reported by the broadcaster ESPNcomes after England manager Gareth Southgate put forward the idea in March.
Southgate feared that the eight-day gap between the last top-level matches, scheduled for November 12-13, and the first round of matches in Qatar on November 21, when England face Iran in Doha, could affect Three Lions’ chances . of lifting the trophy.
Gareth Southgate is concerned that Harry Kane talisman could be injured before the World Cup
Now the FA has reportedly requested that no matches between Liverpool, Manchester City, Chelsea, Manchester United, Arsenal and Tottenham take place that weekend.
Of the most recent 26-man England squad, who lost to Hungary last week and tied with Germany in the Nations League, 12 come from one of the Big Six teams.
The move could protect crucial players for England’s World Cup bid, including Harry Kane, the Tottenham Hotspur forward who is England’s second highest scorer, with 50 goals in 71 games.
Jack Grealish, Raheem Sterling and John Stones of Manchester City, Harry Maguire of Manchester United and other stars who will push for selection and Bukayo Saka at Arsenal could also benefit.
Chelsea midfielder Mason Mount would also be banned from games if the request is granted
Premier League matches are randomly generated but are subject to ‘golden rules’ such as not allowing a team more than two consecutive home or away games, or avoiding teams playing close together in a city such as Liverpool and Everton, for police surveillance reasons.
According to ESPN sources, asks the FA to add an additional golden rule when the games are calculated for the upcoming season so that the strongest teams don’t get games on that critical weekend.
“What would help is if we don’t have a derby or that kind of ‘big six’ games,” Southgate said in March.
“But it’s not the League’s fault that the World Cup is held in the winter.”
In March, Southgate discussed the rapid turn from domestic matches to the World Cup
In 2010, FIFA reversed the award of the 2022 World Cup to Qatar. It soon became apparent that the intense heat of summer in the Middle East would be too great to host the competition safely. As a result, the tournament has been moved to winter, when temperatures can still rise above 30 degrees, necessitating a winter break in European competitions.
Avoiding matches for the Big Six English clubs ahead of the World Cup could also provide some benefit to England’s opponents.
Wales, who England will play in Group B in Qatar, had four players with those clubs in the squad they had named to take on Ukraine in their World play-off eliminator.
Similarly, Germany named four Big Six performers in their Nations League roster ahead of the 1-1 draw with England on Tuesday in Munich.
Harry Maguire of Manchester United could also benefit if the Big Six dodge matches