Euro­pean coaches want ex­tra time scrapped

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - Sport Starts Here -

LON­DON — Top Euro­pean soc­cer coaches dis­cussed the prospect of scrap­ping ex­tra-time at a Uefa sum­mit in Nyon on Wed­nes­day.

The prospect of drawn matches go­ing straight to penal­ties in com­pe­ti­tions such as the Cham­pi­ons League and Euro­pean Cham­pi­onship was dis­cussed.

For­mer Manch­ester United man­ager Sir Alex Fer­gu­son, who is now Uefa’s coach­ing am­bas­sador, said he didn’t like see­ing tired play­ers “walk­ing” around the pitch dur­ing ex­tra-time.

“I don’t think we like to see play­ers ex­hausted in ex­tra-time and when the whis­tle goes at the end of 90 min­utes, I’ve al­ways the feel­ing it’s go­ing to go to penalty kicks,” he said.

“You saw in the last Cham­pi­ons League fi­nal, play­ers walk­ing about... it’s in­evitable that it goes to penalty kicks so the ques­tion is how we can im­prove it?”

Uefa’s chief tech­ni­cal of­fi­cer Ioan Lu­pescu added: “Some coaches said it could be direct to penal­ties, oth­ers thought that could be an ad­van­tage for the smaller teams who could de­fend more.

“One thing that is very clear is that these days the play­ers play so many matches and we raised the ques­tion whether from their point of view it is still worth­while hav­ing ex­tra-time.”

Drawn matches in the Copa Lib­er­ta­dores, South Amer­ica’s equiv­a­lent of the Cham­pi­ons League, do not go to ex­tra-time.

New United man­ager Jose Mour­inho and Arse­nal boss Arsene Wenger both at­tended the meet­ing in Switzer­land, which is de­signed to pro­vide a fo­rum for elite coaches to dis­cuss the ma­jor is­sues im­pact­ing the game across the con­ti­nent. — The Mir­ror

Sir Alex Fer­gu­son

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