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Ebbsfleet United vice-chairman Dean Pooley in favour of a Premier League winter break

By Steve Tervet

Ebbsfleet vice-chairman Dean Pooley has backed calls for a winter break in football.

Premier League bosses may introduce a break when the new TV rights deal is agreed and Pooley, writing in the Fleet matchday programme, said: "I'm a big supporter of such a move at the higher end of the game.

"I think it could have positive trickle-down effects at our level.

Ebbsfleet United vice-chairman Dean Pooley Picture: Simon Hildrew
Ebbsfleet United vice-chairman Dean Pooley Picture: Simon Hildrew

"The benefits of reduced game time on the demands of top players is obvious; you theoretically would get improved performances on a European stage and see trophies return to these shores more regularly rather than heading to Bundesliga or La Liga clubs.

"Of course, the physical demands on players is not restricted to the top leagues, as we very well know given the festive period we've just had in non-league football.

"I'm a big fan of the traditional Boxing Day and New Year's Day games (and the income they generate) and wouldn't want to see them affected by a winter break at our level.

"What's more, attendances and interest in the non-league game would benefit as Premier League fans look more local to get their football fix while their own clubs sit out part of the winter.

"That said, I do think the National League could do with some easing of the pressure on clubs by less packing of the calendar with Saturday and Tuesday games in and around the festive Bank Holiday matches.

"We played six or seven games in a little over two weeks - I know that volume is more or less the same for everyone, but it is huge physical pressure on non-league players."

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