Liverpool star hits out at “unacceptable” international fixture schedule

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Andy Robertson has hit back at FIFA over Scotland’s summer schedule, in which the national team players will have less than two weeks off at the end of the season. 

Scotland are scheduled to play four Nations League games in the month of June and could be in a position where they’ll need to play their World Cup play-off semi-final against Ukraine in the same month as well.  This is before considering a potential final for Steve Clark’s side, should they come through their semi-final clash, which would see the tartan army’s schedule rise to six games with a final in Wales.

Scotland’s schedule has been backlogged due to the war in Ukraine, as the Eastern European side had to pull out of their game scheduled for last week, as a result of the conflict.

The club season also starts earlier this year due to the World Cup in Qatar being played in the winter, which shortens the timeframe further.

Liverpool’s Robertson spoke up as Scotland’s captain, addressing player welfare by stating via the Scottish Daily Express:

“A lot has been said about player welfare over the last couple of years and I hope that’s at the forefront of the decision.

“To ask players to have only two weeks off in a whole year is unacceptable for me

“We are already going to June 14 and all the boys are back at the latest by the start of July. The Scottish-based boys are back well before that, the Championship boys as well.

“You are asking boys to have eight or nine days’ holiday, which I don’t think is fair.

“That’s why I hope it doesn’t go further than June 14.”

Robertson also asked the authorities to prioritise the more important World Cup qualifier games and to give Ukraine as much as they need. The Scotland captain went on:

“Whenever Ukraine can play the game then we have to play it, whether that’s September or October or whenever it has to be.

“But maybe other games could be moved to other international breaks to fit that in.

“It has to be on their terms and I think other games can make way for the most important ones.”

Scotland will be looking to qualify for their first World Cup since 1998 whenever the games are eventually played. This has to be a priority for them, as they are only two games away. The UEFA Nations League should not get in their way.

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