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EFL teams vote to permit five substitutions for rest of season

EFL teams vote to permit five substitutions for rest of season
(Photo by James Baylis – AMA/Getty Images)

EFL clubs have voted to permit the use of five substitutions per game for the remainder of the 2020/21 campaign.

Additional changes have already been approved across Europe with the Premier League now one of few divisions yet to consent to the change.

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The EFL announced the news in a statement posted on their official website.

“Following consultation with Clubs, the EFL Board has agreed to increase the permitted number of substitutes to five in all Sky Bet EFL fixtures taking place from 12 noon on Friday 20 November for the remainder of the 2020/21 season,” it read.

The statement further added that Championship clubs would be allowed to name up to nine substitutes in their matchday squads, while League One and League Two sides would be allowed just seven.

Back in September, Premier League clubs held a similar vote, with the motion to permit five substitutions during a game being overwhelmingly rejected.

The temporary measure was permitted as part of Project Restart last season but smaller clubs are believed to have voted against its continued use over fears that it favours the Big Six.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer
OGS (Photo by Jan Kruger/Getty Images)

Manchester United Ole Gunnar Solskjaer criticised the decision last month, and called for greater consideration for player safety.

“I can see why clubs voted against but if you take a step back and think about these professional footballers and their mental and physical health, the only sensible solution would have been to give us the opportunity to rest a few more,” he said.

Liverpool and Manchester City managers Jurgen Klopp and Pep Guardiola also aired their thoughts after their side’s met last week.

Both opined that not allowing five subs came with increased risk of players’ injuries – despite neither manager making use of all three changes available to them during the game.

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