A lot of football fans find the International breaks rather boring, as the various countries play their games for either the FIFA World Cup qualifying which is going on in this two year cycle, or in the other cycles the Euro Championships or other regional tournaments around the world.
But there just seems to be far too many game trying to be fitted into the football season and something will have to give shortly.
Maybe the top leagues in countries around the world – who provide most of the International players – will need to be reduced in size from 20 clubs to say 18 clubs – that will reduce the league by 4 games, but there are still too many games.
Rafa Benitez directing training
And exactly how the Premier League can manage to squeeze in a winter break, like most of the other European leagues have – is a good question.
But Rafa has identified a positive about the International games.
This is what he has said to the local press today:
“The international break can be good for players who aren’t playing.”
“They can get match fitness. It can be bad for players who are playing when they have to play extra minutes or they may not play, you just have no control of them.”
“I said before that there are too many international games at the moment. You can’t change it, so you have to make sure your players are fine.”
As far as we know Newcastle players have not picked up any injuries on their International exploits, so Rafa should almost have a full squad to choose from for Sunday’s tough game at Elland Road.
And it includes Jonjo Shelvey, who has appealed his FA misconduct charge and asked for a personal hearing and will therefore be available for this game.