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Gareth Southgate Gets His Wish As Premier League's 'Big Six' Kept Apart Before The World Cup

Rory O'Callaghan

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Gareth Southgate Gets His Wish As Premier League's 'Big Six' Kept Apart Before The World Cup

England manager Gareth Southgate will be breathing a sigh of relief after the Premier League's 'Big Six' clubs were kept apart in the final week before the start of the World Cup.

The Football Association had reportedly requested that no matches between Manchester City, Liverpool, Chelsea, Tottenham, Arsenal and Manchester United were held on the final weekend before the tournament in Qatar, which begins on November 21.

The Premier League fixture list for the 2022-23 season was released on Thursday and was kind to Southgate, with no clashes between the 'Big Six' clubs scheduled for the weekend of November 12 and 13.

The World Cup in Qatar gets underway on November 21 (Image: PA)
The World Cup in Qatar gets underway on November 21 (Image: PA)
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Premier League champions Manchester City, who field a number of England internationals in Raheem Sterling, John Stones, Kyle Walker, Phil Foden and Jack Grealish, face Brentford at home that weekend.

Liverpool, who are expected to send Trent Alexander-Arnold and Jordan Henderson to Qatar, take on Southampton at Anfield.

Manchester United, who boast several England internationals in Harry Maguire, Luke Shaw, Jadon Sancho and Marcus Rashford, face Fulham at Craven Cottage.

Chelsea also have a strong English contingent, with Mason Mount, Reece James and Ben Chilwell all likely to feature in Southgate's World Cup squad. They take on Newcastle at St James' Park.

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England face Iran on the opening day of the tournament (Image: PA)
England face Iran on the opening day of the tournament (Image: PA)

Arsenal could contribute several players to England's World Cup squad, including Bukayo Saka, Aaron Ramsdale and Ben White. They face Wolves at Molineux.

Meanwhile, Tottenham and star striker Harry Kane take on Leeds United at home that weekend.

Qatar 2022 will be the first time the World Cup has been held in winter in the Northern Hemisphere.

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The unusual timing of the tournament has caused a major headache for domestic leagues in Europe, with the Premier League forced to schedule a mid-season break of more than six weeks to accommodate the competition.

England boss Southgate has expressed concerns about the quick turnaround for his players from club duties to international football.

England boss Gareth Southgate has expressed concerns about the scheduling of the tournament (Image: PA)
England boss Gareth Southgate has expressed concerns about the scheduling of the tournament (Image: PA)

Back in March, he spoke about the difficulties he would face if high-profile fixtures were staged immediately before the start of the World Cup.

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"What would help is if we don't get a derby or those sorts of 'big six' games," said Southgate.

"But it's not the fault of the League the World Cup is being held in the winter."

The final Premier League games before the winter break will take place just eight days before England face Iran in their first World Cup match on November 21, the opening day of the tournament.

The Three Lions will then take on the United States on November 25 and Wales on November 29 in their remaining group games.

Featured Image Credit: PA Images

Topics: Liverpool, Manchester City, Manchester United, Arsenal, Tottenham Hotspur, Chelsea, Premier League, Gareth Southgate, England, Football World Cup, Football, Qatar

Rory O'Callaghan
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