Give us a break’ is Glenn's Christmas wish

Glenn Roeder believes fans are being short-changed because there is no winter break in the English programme.The City manager is gearing up for the first of four games over a 10-day holiday period this afternoon.

Glenn Roeder believes fans are being short-changed because there is no winter break in the English programme.

The City manager is gearing up for the first of four games over a 10-day holiday period this afternoon. But he says a three-week break in January is essential to keep players fit and fresh to entertain the supporters.

"I like the Boxing Day game, I like the New Year's Day game, I think it is great for supporters," he said. "But thereafter we play a ridiculous amount of football in a short space of time and I think in the end it is the supporters who lose out because the game starts lacking quality - players are missing because of too many games and you get players that are tired. Supporters who don't understand how much effort players put into the modern game wouldn't realise that - it is not a kick-around over the park where you can play every single day. The amount of energy and the amount of ground modern-day players now cover, to be asking them to play every three days is ridiculous. I would much prefer to extend the season into the end of May, and I think supporters would as well, and have at least three weeks off in January."

Roeder has little more than a 16-strong squad to choose from and can't even consider squad rotation - and if his luck runs out with injuries, players have little time to recover.

"It gives you a break, it gives you a chance if you have some niggles, if you have some injuries, to clear up. It just recharges the batteries for everybody.

"At the end of the day we are in the entertainment business and we are always trying to make the product as best as we can and show it off in the best light and watching players play with injuries and tired is not going to create the best spectacle. We are about the only country in Europe that doesn't have a break because we know best - which is a laugh.

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"Do we know best? Course we don't - we know least."