‘We should do the same’ – Former PL referee supports Klopp’s call for more substitutions to be allowed

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Former Premier League referee Keith Hackett has supported Jurgen Klopp’s call for the Premier League to allow five substitutions during a match.

The English top-flight did allow teams to bring five players on from the bench last season but reduced it back to three this campaign.

“I’ve heard people say it [five substitutions] benefits the bigger clubs,” Hackett told Football Insider.

“Look, every club has a squad of 25 players. For me, given the circumstances, given a decision can be made on the morning of the match on whether it will even go ahead, I favour the five subs.

“I favour it on the basis that it is brought in for a limited period until the end of the season then it can be reviewed.

“We all know if they are used from a tactical point of view, delaying the game and all that goes with it then there’s also a negative. Referees fail to add on the time. There are positive and negative impacts with it.

“The rest of Europe has it. We should do the same. The Premier League is the senior competition in Europe and the world and should therefore follow suit.”

Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel is also a supporter of an increase in substitutions after claiming recently that the workload on players needs to be reduced, especially during the festive schedule.

Just because other European leagues have changed their rules doesn’t mean that the Premier League has to follow suit, though.

Some people suggest that an increase in substitutions benefits the so-called bigger teams because they have more squad depth and can therefore introduce even more quality if the match isn’t going their way.

But, in terms of keeping players fit and reducing the workload on them, then being able to make more changes seems the logical thing to do.

If it benefits the players and further improves the quality of football on display then it’s not the worst idea in the world – it’s something that will probably be reviewed at the end of the season.


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