SPINS syndicate supports Olimpija coach and tells NZS: “We demand at least 72 hours of rest between two consecutive matches”
The Professional Football Players’ Union of Slovenia (SPINS) – interestingly – was not disturbed by the fact that they had to Rudar’ s youth players to play two games in less than 48 hours, but the organisation, led by Dejan Stefanović, has publicly sided with Olimpija after the latter claimed that it had to play a league match “already” on Saturday after Wednesday’s European match.
After a town clearing between Bravo and Olimpija, Joao Henriques, the Dragons’ coach, was all indignant and even accused those responsible of “whoever delegated the match today at 13. hour, wants to kill us!“. Now, as I said, SPINS has spoken up, supporting Henriques, while – clearly – forgetting about Rudar’s youngsters. Because they are not professionals? Or is it because it is only worth fighting for those who are already well paid for what they do anyway?
SPINS press release:
In recent weeks, we have noticed a mismatch between the competition calendar prepared by the Football Association of Slovenia and the performances of the top Slovenian football clubs in European competitions and the domestic championship. The most notable cases are the last two matches of NK Olimpija Ljubljana and NK Celje, which had to play a national championship match in less than 72 hours after playing a Europa League match. The coaches of both teams reacted strongly to the inappropriate dates of the national championship matches, and in the case of a match between them, the clubs’ managements even appealed to the NHS to postpone the date of the match, but this was not feasible. According to the medical profession, footballers need 120 hours (5 days) of rest between consecutive matches to perform at their best, with a low risk of injury. This is usually the time set aside for rest, recovery and training.
The SPINS syndicate therefore requests the Football Association of Slovenia to provide for a rest period of at least 72 hours between consecutive matches, which is also the recommended rest period agreed between stakeholders at international level, in order to avoid serious health consequences for football players in the future competition calendar.
In 2019, SPINS published for the first time the results of a survey entitled “At the Limit”, on the (over)workload of football players, mainly due to the unadjusted competition schedule. To date, this research has been followed up by three other large-scale studies, actively involving over 1000 professional football players, top coaches and 92 fitness experts with national team experience. The research was carried out in collaboration with medical institutions, which provided support in the analysis and interpretation of the research findings.
The focus of the analysis of the research results is mainly on the mismatched calendars of international and domestic competitions and the resulting increase in workload over the past few seasons, which has a major impact on the health and well-being of professional footballers. Although the risks of injury and poorer performance on the field are well-known consequences of overtraining, recent research findings also highlight the risks of early retirement from sport, increased incidence of mental health disorders and problems in people’s private lives.
The SPINS Syndicate defends the view that protecting the integrity of domestic competitions is a priority for the Football Association of Slovenia. Much more attention should be paid to these issues, in particular by involving stakeholders, football players or their representatives, in the process of creating and adapting the competition calendar. Let us add that, even at international level, there are currently no systemic safeguards in place for the increased workload of football players, which makes it all the more important to pay more attention to the domestic environment.
The terms and conditions of the work should be agreed before each season in the framework of the social dialogue in football and enshrined in a collective agreement that would bind all stakeholders to respect and protect the integrity of football in Slovenia.
This text was automatically translated using AI.