Premier League winter break confirmed starting February 2020


Essentially, one round of Premier League games is split in half and played over two weekends.

As such, there was a mix of delight and the inevitable annoyance when the FA announced that it would introduce a similar break to the Premier League, with chief executive Martin Glenn confirming that it would come into effect during the 2019/20 season.

While the Premier League will take a break, the Football League will continue with its full schedule as normal.

As part of the move the fifth round of the FA Cup will now be held in midweek, with no replays and extra-time and penalties in their place.

It was a busy January transfer window in the Premier League as most of the top teams brought in significant reinforcements for the second half of the season.

There are now no plans for the EFL to follow suit and a similar rest period for Championship, League One and League Two players is not on the agenda.

Discussions have been going on for "several months", Premier League executive chairman Richard Scudamore said. "As we head into summer global tournaments in the future we are sure that this mid-season break will prove to be a valuable addition for our players".

The winter break ensures that Premier League matches will still be played over the period, with five top-flight games to be staged on the first weekend and five on the following weekend.

In a statement, EFL chief executive Shaun Harvey said "it is now impractical even if it was desirable for the EFL" to take part in the mid-season break because of the scheduling challenges of playing 46-game seasons and play-offs. The rights to show another two rounds of games were purchased by BT Sport for 90 million pounds ($121 million), giving it 52 live matches in total from 2019 to 2022.