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|A-League schedule must be amended to suit international players – Holger Osieck|
Socceroos boss Holger Osieck was left to feel aggrieved following the saga that engulfed national team heroes – Harry Kewell and Brett Emerton – after being wedged in the middle of a club versus country fiasco.
Osieck has questioned Football Federation Australia’s decision to commence the new A-League campaign on an international sanctioned FIFA date. The Socceroos play a friendly against Malaysia in Canberra on Friday October 7, followed by a World Cup qualifier against Oman in Sydney four days later. Stuck in-between, is the opening round of the A-League season.
”These conflicts have existed for many years and the FIFA calendar with fixed dates was brought in to protect the interests of the clubs and federations,” Osieck stated when talking with The World Game.
”This is a unique situation in the world we've got here, where a local federation does not accept a FIFA date.
The German further explicated the governing body’s decision as disrespectful, and believes the decision to play A-league football during the international window can only encompass a detrimental image on the competition.
”You also devalue your league by doing this.
”All the big leagues in the world know this and respect it: I won't mention the Bundesliga but the Premier League, La Liga and Serie A all do it.”
When the A-League schedule was originally announced, many pundits, accompanied with the football community applauded the FFA’s reasoning to begin the A-League campaign on October 8 – aiming to fortify football’s exposure, following the conclusion of the AFL and NRL seasons – however the decision seemingly backfired with prominent figures Kewell and Emerton returning to play for Melbourne Victory and Sydney FC respectively.