Premier League

Championship subs plan puts pressure on Premier League

Top-flight club clubs voted against allowing more substitutions this season but could reconsider after a change of heart in the second tier.

5:01pm on Tuesday 17th November 2020
David Lynch

The Premier League is set to come under increased pressure over its substitution rules after it emerged that Championship teams will be able to make five per game from November.

Having increased the amount of allowed substitutions during a fast-tracked finish to the 2020-21 campaign, top-flight clubs voted to revert to three for this season.

However, with the calendar still compacted as a result of the coronavirus-enforced break earlier this year, there has been a noticeable increase in injuries.

According to reports, the Championship have resolved to ease that crisis by introducing five substitutions per game.

And that could force the Premier League, who have twice voted against making the same change, to reconsider its stance.

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has been one of the more vocal critics of the decision to revert to three substitutions.

And he found a kindred spirit in Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp when the pair discussed the issue after seeing their sides play out a 1-1 draw prior to the international break.

Guardiola explained: “We didn’t speak about the result. We spoke about how we need to fight again and again for five substitutions.

“Look, an international England player, Trent Alexander-Arnold, he’s injured. All around the world, there are five substitutions.

“But here we believe we are more special people and [use] just three players. We don’t protect the players.

“That’s why it’s a disaster with this calendar. I will demand, if the people allow my voice, to come back with five substitutions.

“It will help the players, the managers and everywhere to do it. If not it’s difficult to sustain it.”

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