England coach Gareth Southgate believes that his players are being pressured by their clubs to manage their playing time with the national team in order to avoid the threat of injuries amid a very demanding schedule.
With England playing three times in a space of seven days in the Nations League with the Covid-19 pandemic tightening the 2020/21 Premier League (PL) season’s match schedule, player fatigue has become a major concern for many coaches in the league.
Southgate is of the opinion that players are eager to play for England but find themselves in a “difficult situation” with their clubs.
“They are under huge pressure from their clubs. That is going on in the background, for sure,” said Southgate ahead of England’s final Nations League group match against Iceland on Wednesday evening (21:45) at Wembley Stadium.
“That is the landscape, whether it is made public or not. That is the reality. It manifests itself in different ways but that is what happens.
“We do not just have two or three clubs in the title race any more, we’re looking at six or seven clubs in England and there is huge pressure on every result. Everybody is looking to try and gain an advantage and if they feel someone else is getting an advantage, they want to make sure their voice is heard as well.
“In terms of the managers, there’s a power game the whole time whether that is phone calls, messages, press conferences — we know everything that goes on. Everybody is inevitably going to fight their own corner,” concluded England coach.
Southgate is missing Jordan Henderson and Raheem Sterling in his squad as both players are out due to injuries sustained on international duty while Ben Chilwell is being assessed for a back problem.
RELATED STORY: Chauke roped in by England
By FARPost Reporter