The Football Association (FA) has announced the Premier League will get a two-week mid-season break in February, starting in the 2019-20 season.
A period of rest during the hectic winter months in English football has been a regular topic of debate, with some putting England’s international failings down to the lack of respite afforded to players during the domestic campaign.
But, from the 2019-20 campaign, the top tier will get a two-week break in February to help ease concerns of overexertion.
The proposed structure will ensure the Premier League continues to run through a two-week period, with each weekend during the break featuring five top-flight games instead of the usual 10.
To accommodate the change, the FA has agreed to move FA Cup fifth-round clashes to midweek and replays at this stage of the competition will be scrapped, to be replaced by extra-time and penalties.
FA chief executive Martin Glenn revealed while addressing councillors on May 30 that an agreement was close, and now the alteration has been confirmed, and he hopes it will have a positive impact on England’s senior team.
He told the FA’s website: “This is a significant moment for English football and one that we believe will greatly benefit both club and country.
“It’s no secret that we have a very congested fixture calendar and over recent years we have been working with the whole game to find a solution.
“Today’s announcement proves that football can come together for the good of the game. We have also found a way to give the players a much-needed mid-season break, whilst keeping the much-loved Christmas schedule in place.
“As we head into summer international tournaments in the future we are sure that this mid-season break will prove to be a valuable addition for our players.”