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A football season that will be more intense than any other: Thibaut Courtois

Updated  

Aug-07 11:02 first published at 11:02 AM


The European leagues begin… Clubs are occupied by the “Countdown to the World Cup.”
Courtois stated that the “World Cup” will intensify the current season.

Sunday, 10 Muharram 1444 AH – Saturday, 07 August 2022 AD Issue No. [15958]

The English Premier League kicked off with exciting results (Reuters)

«Asharq Al-Awsat» in Doha

Thibaut Courtois of Real Madrid, who helped Real Madrid win the Champions League for the 14th time in its history, confirmed that “the 2022 World Cup will make the current season more intense than any other.”

Many believe that the 2022-2023 European Championship football season will be abnormal; clubs must adapt to the forced and exceptional period of suspension during the Qatar World Cup, which runs from November 21 to December 18.

So far, the championships of England, Germany, France, the Netherlands, and Portugal have begun, with Spain and Italy joining them next week. All activity in these tournaments will cease at the end of the week of November 12 and 13, to allow players participating in the football wedding to join their national teams before the opening match on November 21st. The World Cup concludes on December 18, with the English Premier League resuming play eight days later, on December 26th, on “Boxing Day.” The Spanish League train returns on December 31, while the French League has abandoned the Christmas and New Year’s break, with teams playing on December 28 and January 1st. The Italian League, whose team is missing from the World Cup for the second time in a row, will not return until January 4, whereas the German League has maintained its tradition of shutting down for a long period during the winter season, between November 13 and January 20, or more than two months. “The World Cup pause in the middle of the season will affect all teams in every league around the world,” said former German football star Jürgen Klissenmann, who coached his country and the United States at the World Cup. “It (the World Cup) will have an impact on the performance of players and teams,” he added. Everyone may find the season to be dramatic. This has never happened before, and everyone will feel the effects.” Because of the compressed schedule, national teams will only have one window to play their test matches, in late September. Due to a lack of time, the European Union was forced to hold the six rounds of the Champions League in early November, after the sixth round, in particular, was held in the first ten days of December. Christophe Galtier, the new coach of Paris Saint-Germain, stated, “We definitely have to give the players some rest, by adapting to playing fewer minutes in order to avoid their injuries as much as possible.” The World Cup is usually held in June and July every four years, but due to the extreme heat in Qatar, the International Football Association Board (FIFA) decided to move it to the end of the autumn season. Normally, when the World Cup was held in the summer, players whose teams did not qualify for the finals would go on vacation, but that is no longer the case. For example, Egyptian Liverpool star Mohamed Salah will travel to Dubai for a training camp with his Scottish colleague Andy Robertson. “Dubai is close to Qatar, so the players can return quickly and prepare with the team, giving us real time to prepare for the second half of the season,” Liverpool assistant coach Pep Leenders explained. “Last season was like a marathon, with 63 matches played,” he added. The current season is similar to a sprint, pause, and sprint again. As a result, it is critical to get off to a fast start, which the Dubai camp will do. We will begin immediately following the World Cup.” In this regard, the English Premier League’s decision to allow 5 substitutions per match, as do its counterparts in other European countries, was a catalyst. And if clubs are currently focused on adapting to the start of the countdown to the World Cup and during its stay, what will happen after its end will have consequences, according to Simon Rolfes, the former German national team player, and the current sporting director of Bayer Leverkusen. In an interview with German media recently, Rolfes pointed out that “the (Bundesliga) league will witness a more compressed program than before; Especially for the clubs that will compete in international competitions and will support their players in the World Cup, and these will have heavy burdens.”

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