Horrible Subs No Game No Life !!LINK!!
Somewhere in the slipstream of wider debates about the future of football, a conversation over the use of five substitutes in the Premier League has rumbled on for some time. English football has concerned itself with far-reaching issues involving the possibility of an independent regulator and more robust ownership rules in light of Chelsea's sale and Newcastle United's takeover, all underpinned by a desire to preserve the integrity and competitiveness of the game.
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Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp is perhaps the biggest proponent of introducing the five substitutes rule, and from his point of view, it is easy to see why. Every other major European league has it, UEFA's three main competitions (Champions League, Europa League and European Championships) have it and there is a strong case for some sort of measure to aid player welfare. The Reds played 63 games in their 2021-22 campaign, though that is still five short of the English record held by Chelsea (69) in 2012-13. Klopp used all five substitutes in seven of Liverpool's nine league games during Project Restart, the coda to the 2019-20 season delayed by the coronavirus pandemic. Only Brighton (8) used more all five more often.
For much of the intervening period -- the Premier League voted against retaining five subs in 2020-21 and 2021-22 -- fault lines in the debate were drawn largely by the size of the club involved. Klopp used Burnley as a somewhat patronizing comparison in contrasting the high number of players Liverpool had engaged in international football, suggesting smaller teams would have fewer players away with their countries and could therefore use those punctuation points during the season to recover. It is a point with merit, but five substitutes doesn't solve the real underlying problem that the game's governing bodies do not want to address: there is too much football.
Sources have told ESPN that one member of the Big Six ran their own data modelling that suggested five substitutes would have had a negligible effect on their results, citing the number of matches as a far bigger factor. And this is the point the game's organisers do not want to address because it will inevitably affect their bottom line.
In the local league, the teams that turn up with just 5 players and no subs rarely win their games, but always end up looking like sweaty heart-attack candidates when the final whistle blows. Get at least one sub, preferably two, so that you can take it in turns getting a breather and the rest of the players can keep the pressure on the other team for the full match.
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