UEFA head of football, Zvonimir Boban who captained Croatia’s 1998 World Cup team to a third-place finish, has criticized the new added-time rules in English football.
The football administrator described the new rule as “absurd” and will not be used in European competitions this season.
The Premier League implemented the new rules after heeding to a directive by football’s legislators, Ifab, to ensure that there is enough amount of extra time to make up for goal celebrations, substitutions, injuries, and general time-wasting.
The refereeing body in England, PGMOL, gained inspiration for this new rule from the 2022 Men’s World Cup and 2023 Women’s World Cup in which FIFA implemented extended added time.
Due to the new rules, the average match time in the Premier League has moved from 98 minutes and 26 seconds in the 2022–2023 season to 101 minutes and 49 seconds this season.
Hence, matches in England have been running beyond 100 minutes since the start of the new campaign.
“It’s absolutely absurd,” the UEFA head of football said as quoted by the BBC.
“Regarding player welfare, it’s some kind of big tragedy because [they] are adding almost 12, 13, 14 minutes.”
He added, “When you play 60, 65 minutes – I can speak from my experience, especially as a midfielder – when you get tired, it’s the last 30 minutes of the game. And then somebody comes and adds another 15 minutes.
“How often we have spoken critically about the calendar and too many games? We are not listening to players and coaches [about welfare]. It’s crazy! It’s too much, so we will not do this. Our guidelines are different.”