Petr Cech would like a winter break in England, and has an idea on how one could be implemented.
A debate over English football implementing a winter break is one the surest things of the year.
England’s hectic, and at times downright crazy, schedule in December and January has led to many managers and players calling for a break to be introduced.
The argument against is that it would spoil a long-standing tradition of football over the festive period.
Back in 2015, Arsene Wenger said he would cry if one was introduced.
“I would cry if you changed that because it’s part of English tradition and English football,” Wenger said, as reported by the Telegraph.
“It’s a very important part of us being popular in the world, that nobody works at Christmas and everybody watches the Premier League.”
Petr Cech is one of those in favour of a break, but has an idea about how to introduce one without impeding tradition.
“We should, but not during the Christmas period, because it has such a great tradition in this country and I wouldn’t change that,” he told Arsenal Player.
“Usually the first week of January or the second week of January is the FA Cup game and I think there are plenty of moments where you can shift one week. I would probably leave this period because, as I said, it’s really special in England.
“I would play in the frantic and charged period of December and in the first week of January. Then the second week of January I would give everybody a break because I think if you cut those five days, it would help people to recharge physically and mentally.
“People would be refreshed, the teams would have a week where you could have five days off completely, for people to drift away from football, then come back, have five days of preparation and then resume.
“I think it would have no impact on anything because if you think, every year we finish around May 20, then have the FA Cup depending on how it goes. Then you have international games which start on June 13, so if you finish on May 20, you still have to train because you go to the national team.”
Cech’s idea makes a lot of sense.
In fact, it’s something that Serie A has already done this season.
Serie A usually went into its break during Christmas, but this time they played during that period and are having their break in the first two weeks of January instead.
This approach would satisfy the desire to see football over Christmas, while also giving players valuable rest.
Every year, we see a glut of injuries during this period as players play too often too soon.
Arsenal themselves are suffering with several injuries to key players.
Tired players and heavily rotated teams result in a decline in entertainment value and quality football.
For instance, the round of fixtures played on the 30th and 31st of December saw five draws, with four of them being goalless.
Chelsea’s 5-0 win over Stoke was the only game that yielded more than three goals.
Given there’s always a break between the season’s end and June’s internationals, there shouldn’t be any reason why a break can’t happen in January.