Premier League chief warns of calendar 'tipping point'

Richard Masters, chief executive of the Premier League
Richard Masters says players are concerned there is "too much football" [Getty Images]

Premier League chief executive Richard Masters says the football calendar is "getting to a tipping point" with the amount of matches teams are being asked to play.

An expanded Champions League and Club World Cup could see a hefty increase in matches for some clubs in the 2024-25 season.

The Football Association has scrapped FA Cup replays from the first round onwards due to the increase in matches.

"It stands to reason if you overload the calendar and the players, at some point, something has to give," said Masters.

"It is getting to a tipping point. The feedback we have from players is that there is too much football being played and there is constant expansion."

The Champions League will expand to 36 teams next season and the group stage will be replaced by a league format, resulting in teams playing an extra two matches.

The Club World Cup, which is currently held annually and features seven teams from six confederations, will become a 32-team tournament to be held every four years.

Chelsea and Manchester City will feature in the Club World Cup, which will run from 15 June to 13 July 2025 in the United States.

Masters, who was appointed to his Premier League post in 2019, warned: "If you pour more liquid into a cup that is already full, it will overflow."


For leading players, next season promises to be busier than ever.

The Premier League campaign starts on 17 August, while the Club World Cup final takes place almost 11 months later.

Manchester City will compete in a 36-team Champions League, which has eight games for all sides in the opening phase and a play-off round before it reaches the last 16.

Chelsea could be in the Europa League, which has the same format.

EFL Cup matches will be scheduled in weeks where European competitions take place, so it is possible the clubs involved on both fronts - more likely to be those involved in the Europa League and Conference League - will have two midweek games.

Little wonder the players are starting to declare "enough".

Administrators can come up with the best plans ever. If they don’t take the players with them, they have a problem.