Many English soccer fans went into shock when they found out that there will be a break in matches, so everyone is asking: why are there no Premier League matches on January 20, 2022? Here is the explanation.
And the fact is that the break will be a bit longer as there will be no Premier League games from January 24 to February 7, since England will not have another break until March. But what is the reason for this?
This is why there will be no Premier League games on January 29, 2022
The reason or rather reasons are twofold: first, because the FA was forced to abolish the break last year due to the reduced fixture list caused by Covid-19, but has opted to reintroduce it this season.
And the second reason is that because this year's World Cup takes place in December, the soccer action is likely to be uninterrupted for players, coaches, and staff traveling to Qatar in November.
For this reason, the FA is hoping that a winter break at the end of January will give England's players a rest ahead of next winter's tournament.
This decision is understandable, especially for English teams in the top division, which usually play not one, not two tournaments a year, but four.
These tournaments are the Premier League, the Football League Championship, the FA Cup, and the Community Shield. And this is not counting the teams that have to play Champions League, Premier League, and Club World Cup.
Because of this wear and tear, it is understandable that teams in England need to stop their activities once a year, although this time the issue is more driven by the COVID-19 that has caused several matches to be suspended.
Do all clubs agree that no matches will be played on January 29, 2022, in the Premier League?
No, and this is an issue that has concerned several clubs who wish to take advantage of the break to be able to play their rescheduled matches after they were interrupted in January.
Several matches have been postponed due to outbreaks of COVID-19 within some teams, the most recent example being Arsenal vs Tottenham.
According to the Daily Mail, the FA will block any attempt to play postponed matches during the January-February break.
But one thing to keep in mind: the Premier League does not plan to use this time to resolve the backlog of matches, but this decision could change if more games are postponed in the coming weeks.
How many games have been interrupted by COVID-19?
The pandemic has hit the Premier League hard and last December at least 19 matches were postponed due to outbreaks in different teams.
And on December 16, 2021, it was revealed that in addition to those 19 postponed games, the games of Aston Villa vs. Leeds United and Wolves vs. Arsenal would also be postponed due to COVID-19 outbreaks.
Some others of those 19 postponed games were Leicester-Tottenham, Manchester United-Brighton, Brentford-Southampton, Watford-Crystal Palace, and West Ham-Norwich, just to give you an idea of how complex it is to reschedule these games.