FA claim 39th game format is 'unsustainable'

February 21, 2008

The Football Association have said the Premier League's proposal for overseas matches is 'unsustainable' in its current format.

A board meeting of the FA ended today with the members deciding that the disruption to fixtures and impact on their relations with international bodies was too problematic.

FA chairman, Lord Triesman, said: 'At the moment, we have not seen a sustainable plan to which we can agree.

'If the Premier League has things it wants to say about changes or new variants, well then they will come forward.

'But personally, I would prefer it happened sooner rather than later because I don't want this to drift on particularly as we are to launch our World Cup bid (for 2018).

'In general I think uncertainty is not very helpful if it goes on for any length of time but that is a matter for them.'

It is understood that there was almost unanimous agreement among the board members that the League's proposals to hold a 39th game in a foreign city could not be supported.

Triesman added on Sky Sports News: 'The whole of the process, I think, certainly does require some fresh thinking and some really substantive answers to the questions I've posed.'

The FA chairman also revealed he will meet with FIFA president Sepp Blatter - who is staunchly opposed to the Premier League's plan - next week.

He said: 'I'm committed to going next week. I don't know what the logistics would be about when the Premier League can and can't go - we haven't had a chance to talk about that, but I most certainly will be there.'