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Last Updated: Sunday, 19 August 2007, 11:33 GMT 12:33 UK
McClaren view disappoints League
England coach Steve McClaren
Coach McClaren has upset the Premier League
The Premier League is disappointed with England boss Steve McClaren's criticism of the domestic fixture schedule.

Twelve England players are involved in League games on Sunday so will miss Monday's England training session ahead of Wednesday's friendly with Germany.

McClaren says the schedule gives him only an hour of preparation on Tuesday.

"The Football Association were part of the fixtures working party. We worked hard to help England," League spokesman Dan Johnson told the Mail on Sunday.

606: DEBATE

"It is disappointing to hear this. We can't micro-manage fixtures. If we had removed the Manchester derby game and Liverpool v Chelsea match and put them somewhat else we might have created problems elsewhere.

"If anything, we feel for the clubs. They just get started then they are interrupted by a friendly international so early in their season.

"We would point out that there is an agreement in place ahead of competitive games."

McClaren named a 28-man squad but 12 players will be involved in Sunday's key clashes - in which Manchester City face Manchester United, Liverpool play host to Chelsea and Blackburn visit Arsenal.

"We talk about helping England and England becoming successful but you have got to have a bit of help," said McClaren.

All we can do is voice our opinions and keep hammering at the door

England coach Steve McClaren

"I don't think going into a friendly against Germany with so many of our team being involved in big games against each other is going to help us one little bit.

"In preparation terms, it probably means we will get an hour on Tuesday to get ourselves ready for the game on Wednesday.

"It is something I am not happy about and I have expressed that unhappiness to the Premier League fixtures people.

"These points were made when Sven-Goran Eriksson was in charge and they have been made again. But apparently, it is water off a duck's back."

McClaren added that there is a "Catch-22" situation regarding the power that television holds over the scheduling of games.

"I don't know how to resolve the issue or know what the answer is," he stated.

"You cannot escape the fact TV has made our league the best in the world.

We are just not helping England and English clubs

McClaren on fixture congestion

"I just know it doesn't help England. All we can do is voice our opinions and keep hammering at the door."

The former Middlesbrough manager is still hopeful that the Premier League will incorporate a mid-season break in order to ease both the fixture congestion for clubs and help the national team.

"We will still keep beating the door down about having a winter break because I think it will ultimately help our players towards the end of the season, not just England but at club level as well," he said.

"In that last season at Middlesbrough, we had 64 games.

"We ended it in a Uefa Cup final when we had to play four games in eight days prior to the final on a Wednesday.

"That is not ideal preparation. With the way things are at the moment, we are just not helping England and English clubs."



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