How Does the World Cup Affect Aston Villa’s Season?
The football world should have all been looking forward to the World Cup kicking off this month to provide a celebratory summertime dose of football entertainment. When you cast you mind back to 2010 and the voting rounds for the 2022 World Cup, Qatar was promising air conditioned stadiums and cloud machines to counter their extreme summertime heat.
Qatar bid chief executive, Hassan Al-Thawadi, declared, “Heat is not and will not be an issue.”
It was though…all of a sudden, once they had actually won the vote to host the tournament.
So, here we are, patiently waiting for a World Cup winter wonderland.
The big question is, how is it going to affect the forthcoming Premier League season for Aston Villa?
When are Aston Villa’s Fixtures Announced?
Aston Villa’s schedule for the 2022/23 Premier League season will be revealed at 9am on Thursday, June 16, so that will sharply focus supporters minds to the unique season ahead.
The season will begin on Saturday 6th August and end on Sunday 28th May 2023.
While there are pros and cons for when to play various teams during a season, one potential plus could be playing any of last season’s Premier League top four around October and November. The Champions League schedule is particularly congested this season due to cramming in the winter World Cup, with weekly group matches crammed in between the period of October 4 and November 2.
When will the 2022 World Cup take place?
The World Cup will take place between November 21, 2022 and December 18, 2022.
The last round of Premier League matches (match round 16) will be played over the weekend of 12/13 November, before the World Cup kicks off, and then the Premier League will resume on Boxing Day.
The final match round of the Premier League will be played on Sunday, May 28, 2023, when all games will kick off simultaneously as per usual.
Any Villa Advantages?
Apart from the potential benefit of playing a Premier League team involved in the Champions’ League in the month of October, the main advantage could be the potential freshness of players not involved in the World Cup. This maybe beneficial towards the backend of the Premier League season.
When you consider the likes of Mohamed Salah (Egypt) and Erling Haaland (Norway) will not be at the tournament due to their countries not qualifying, they could run riot against tired backlines. With that in mind, MOMS wouldn’t be too disappointed if both Diego Carlos and Tyronne Mings don’t make their respective country’s Word Cup squads.
However, with Villa upping the level of the players they have been bringing in since the last World Cup, we’ll be certainly watching a higher concentration of Villa players on international duty in Qatar.
Emiliano Martinez (Argentina), Matty Cash (Poland), Lucas Digne and Boubacar Kamara (France), and Philippe Coutinho (Brazil) will be certainties. While Emi Buendía (Argentina), Ollie Watkins and Mings (England), Douglas Luiz and Carlos (Brazil), all may still make their respective squads.
The only real big plus in terms of freshness of key Villa players left behind, would probably be in the cases of both John McGinn and Danny Ings.
Ultimately though, you’d think with the new provision of the five substitues being allowed in the Premier League next season, the impact of a winter World Cup won’t be too drastic in terms of player fitness.
- Saturday 6th August 2022: Start of the Premier League season
- Champions League group stage dates:
Matchday 1: 6/7 September 2022
Matchday 2: 13/14 September 2022
Matchday 3: 4/5 October 2022
Matchday 4: 11/12 October 2022
Matchday 5: 25/26 October 2022
Matchday 6: 1/2 November 2022
- Saturday 12th November – 13th November 2022: Final round of Premier League games before World Cup.
- Monday 21st November 2022: 2022 Qatar World Cup starts
- Sunday 18th December 2022: World Cup ends
- Monday 26th December 2022: Premier League resumes on Boxing Day