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PSV game postponed, and the fixture list is a problem

Given that Chelsea’s Champions League game tomorrow night is going ahead, it was a bit surprising and disappointing that Arsenal’s game against PSV on Thursday was cancelled.

Perhaps it has something to do with the fact that from Thursday, the Queen’s coffin will lie in state, requiring greater police presence for those days and the 24 hour a day access to the public. Perhaps it’s that the 60,000 at the Emirates, plus a significant contingent of away fans stretches police resources too far.

Suffice to say though, this was not Arsenal’s decision. The club wanted to play the match, and I’m told that ‘all options’ were explored. Quite why a behind closed doors game isn’t going ahead, or a game without away fans, I don’t know. It could be that there’s still some police requirement for those scenarios; maybe Arsenal didn’t want to give up the revenue of a match day (understandably enough); or maybe there are rules precluding games going on behind closed doors unless it’s for something disciplinary – UEFA do have sponsors and advertisers to keep sweet, after all.

Suggestions we simply flip the fixture and play this game in Eindhoven sound good, but logistically it’s very difficult. The amount of planning required, stadium management, staffing, resources, policing, travel, broadcasting, equipment, hotels etc, make it basically impossible at such short notice. Similarly, playing at a ‘neutral’ venue presents the same problems.

Whatever the reason, it now presents Arsenal with a real head-scratcher because as it stands there’s literally no space in the fixture list to reschedule this one. After the Interlull which kicks in after the Brentford game on Sunday, we have weekend and midweek action every week until the break for the World Cup. The final Europa League group stage games are down to be played on November 3rd, when we face FC Zurich at home, while PSV play Bodo/Glimt.

Look at the schedule, there are nine (9!) games in October…

Source link : https://arseblog.com/2022/09/psv-game-postponed-and-the-fixture-list-is-a-problem/

Author : arseblog

Publish date : 2022-09-13 05:58:24

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