The new 5 replacements are a FIFA bet to ease calendar pressures on players


Football lawmakers are studying a “temporary” change in the rules of the game, allowing teams to make 5 game replacements instead of 3, with resumption of activity currently suspended due to the emerging Corona virus.

FIFA had submitted in late April a proposal to increase the number of substitutions during the matches, and to raise it from 3 (during the normal time) to 5, to help players cope with the intense pressure of the matches that they are expected to play in the coming period, to compensate for the stoppage that It is almost two months complete.

It is expected that the IFFB, which is concerned with the rules of the game, will approve this proposal on Friday.

The epidemic (Covid-19) has suspended most football competitions around the world since mid-March.

While most national championships are still awaiting health status developments to determine possible dates for the resumption of matches, other tournaments, most notably Germany, have begun preparing for a return soon in the second half of May.

Last month, IFAP announced that it was working with FIFA to adopt a temporary amendment to Law 3 (for players), allowing competitions to give teams the option to use a maximum of 5 substitutes on 3 occasions during the match, and between the two periods.

Reducing the number of occasions where teams can make changes removes the incentive to do so only for the purpose of wasting time.

A sixth substitution may also be permitted for matches that extend into overtime.

Teams can currently make 3 substitutions during the match, knowing that they have been allowed since 2018, to make a fourth change, but only in overtime.

A source close to the file said: “The national championships will not be obligated to implement this change (that is, increase the number of substitutions), and they are free to do it once they resume.”

Germany will become the first country among the five major European leagues to resume the game, after the government of Chancellor Angela Merkel and the 16th district officials of the domestic league authorized this to be done without an audience.

The Bundesliga League, which supervises the first and second degrees, set the date for return on May 15.

IFAP aims to “protect the health of players” when matches resume, with a schedule expected to be more intense than usual to make up for the layoff and end the season as soon as possible, which could lead to an “increased risk of injuries.”

While the measure is intended to be temporary, it can be maintained during the next season (2020-2021), up to the European Cup that will be held in the summer of 2021, after it postponed its original date this summer due to the pandemic (Covid-19).

FIFA stressed that the application of the procedure, after approval, would be “at the discretion of the organizer of each competition.”

A source close to the file said: “If this measure is still in effect, the European Football Association (FIFA) can adopt it in the European Cup.”

And the decision, if adopted permanently, can be in the interest of the capable clubs whose formation includes a large number of reserve players who are able to provide wide tactical options to their coach.


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