'Five subs will help with fatigue, injuries'

Neville Khoza Journalist

With the Premier Soccer League (PSL) having confirmed that teams will be allowed to use five substitutions when the league resume from tomorrow, coaches Clinton Larsen and Eric Tinkler believe that this will benefit a lot of teams.Fifa made the temporary change to the laws of the game ease the physical strain on players, who are returning to a congested period of games after a lengthy break due to the Covid-19 pandemic.But this could favour the bigger clubs such as Mamelodi Sundowns, Orlando Pirates and Kaizer Chiefs who have deeper squads and better players ready to come off the bench.Larsen said that even though this is not going to change too much, it will help them when players are fatigued and injured."We are talking about two extra subs because the players don't have that much fitness that they usually have," the Polokwane City coach explains in an interview with Sowetan."So, common sense must prevail; you know Fifa have done their research that's why they have come up with these plans to help teams."For me, I think it is some measures which have been put in place to help teams to acclimatise with a lack of preparation. We are going to see across the games certain teams are going to be struggling with cramps late in the game."That's going to be normal. It is just the nature of what we are going through at the moment, a very unusual way of training."Other coaches in Europe have criticised the new rule calling it "terrible" and that the game is "distorted", but Larsen insists this will be a huge advantage for every team.Maritzburg United coach Tinkler echoed Larsen's sentiment and said that he is happy with the temporary rule."The players having been out for as long as they were for three months and fitness level won't be up there so that's the whole thing of the five subs to ensure that we don't have a lot of injuries," Tinkler said."So I'm all for it. I think this is the right thing to do."

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