England’s busy fixture list is the topic of conversation yet again, this time from Chelsea manager Guus Hiddink.
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The Blues’ boss has called for doctors to help bring about schedule changes in an attempt to protect players’ health.
Hiddink’s comments were spurred on by the scheduling of Chelsea’s FA Cup sixth-round match against Everton, which is set for Saturday, March 12.
Chelsea have Premier League matches on Tuesday, March 1 and Saturday, March 5, followed by a Champions League match against PSG on Wednesday, March 9.
Chelsea’s league match against Liverpool was postponed due to the FA Cup tie with Everton, but Hiddink is upset because his players will lose a day of rest due to the schedule changes.
I am frustrated. We have to protect the players.
Hopefully the PSG game doesn’t go into extra-time because players need time when the intensity of the league is like it is.
The medical people at the FA and the Premier League should make this known. Every club has medical departments. The doctors should stand up and say: ‘FA, television, whoever…. hey’.
Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp has also been open about his displeasure with the busy schedule, although this is his first taste of English football.
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In Hiddink’s second spell at Chelsea, he should be accustomed to a match-filled schedule. In his first stint at Stamford Bridge, Hiddink had to balance three competitions, winning the FA Cup while leading Chelsea to the Champions League semifinal and a third-place finish in the league.