O'Neill Backs Capello's Excuse
We all know Fabio Capello, despite thinking England played well, has blamed the domestic season for his teams failings at the World Cup, and O'Neill actually supports the idea of a Winter Break.
Quite why I don't know, but let's find out.
Speaking on the Official Site O'Neill to be fair doesn't see the merit in reorganising the fixture list to suit England and nor does he propose it for that reason. Let's face it the excuse players are tired is a bit of a nonsense as non English Premier League based players on the whole seem to be able to find their form on the International stage.
For Villa related players yeah it makes sense, they do play every single game after all...but for others their clubs use rotation. Anyway, O'Neill does however see the merit in changes that would benefit the domestic clubs especially as Villa permanently have a March cloud hanging over their heads.
'My own view is there should be a winter break. I believe it would give everyone a lift in January,' said O'Neill.
He goes on to explain that such a break would not interrupt the traditional Boxing and New Year's Day games - they would proceed as normal - because the 3 week break would not start until after those fixtures.
Now I must admit I've never really entertained the idea of a Winter break, ok for players with kids continuing with fixtures instead of spending Xmas and New Year properly with your family is a bit rough - but then again they are well rewarded and there are plenty of minimum wage jobs out there that still require normal folk to work Christmas Day and so on, so really I don't think that's a good argument now although admittedly it was one I went with for many years.
But with the rise in cost of football over the past few years, there is merit in a 3 week break ending at the start of February, if for no other reason than Christmas is an expensive time for everybody. There are plenty of non season ticket holders who despite going regularly during the season simply cannot afford to do so in January.
A 3 week hiatus until the next pay packet comes in could well help more fans to turn up at B6. So for that reason I'm all for it as I see it as win, win. Not just for the players but more importantly so, for the fans themselves.
Now if we could only get rid of pointless mid season international money spinners for the FA the players would be even more rested!!!!
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