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Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Agreement struck between clubs and Uefa to reduce number of international matches

However, the European Club Association has admitted there has been no progress with Fifa regarding attempts to have the dates of the Africa Cup of Nations moved

Uefa and European clubs have come to an agreement to reduce the number of international matches in a calendar year.Following discussions, the number of double-headed matches has been decreased to nine over a period of two years, despite clubs asking for the current number of 12 per year to be halved.

However, Uefa will not be backing the clubs as they attempt to oppose Fifa regarding the timing of the Africa Cup of Nations and Karl-Heinz Rummenigge, chairman of the European Club Association stated that the situation with the world’s governing body remains 'unsatisfactory'.

"The agreement with Uefa is a major breakthrough for European club football,” he said.“While an agreement has been reached with Uefa, the situation remains unsatisfactory in relation to Fifa. “Unfortunately, discussions with the Fifa president have failed to lead to a satisfactory outcome which takes account of the clubs' demands.”

Following Rummenigge’s comments, Fifa pointed the blame at the ECA in a statement, claiming the ECA had rejected to attend meetings in the past, therefore making their demands hard to meet.The statement read: “ECA representatives have previously declined attendance to other Fifa committee meetings, making it very difficult for progress to be made in discussions with the European clubs.

“The international dates and the international match calendar have to be applied on a worldwide basis and that this calendar is ultimately regulated by Fifa.”In the agreement between Uefa and European clubs, it was decided that both matches in the double-headers should be played on the same continent, the final tournaments of all confederations will come to an end in July, while the August international friendly date has been removed. -


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