How Much Work Goes Into Compiling The Premier League Fixtures ?
Wednesday, 12th Jun 2019 08:37
The wait is nearly over, but tomorrow is the day that it comes to an end and the Premier League fixture list is announced, but how much work goes into compiling these fixtures ? Read on and find out.
Saints fans along with those of every other club spend a month or so in at the end of every season, after 11 months of knowing whom their team is playing and where they might be on any given weekend, suddenly they have a period of uncertainty and can't plan anything unless the date coincides with a vital fixture.
That changes tomorrow because at 9am on Thursday 13th June the Premier League fixtures are released.
Most supporters don't realise the actual planning that has to go into these fixtures and how difficult it is to compile them, having attended a presentation at the Premier League offices in London it is eyeopening.
The Premier League themselves want to avoid repetition so rather than take the easy step and merely put a carbon copy of the previous years fixtures out, they have to start from scratch and mix it around every year.
Work starts before the previous season is even ended, by the end of February the PL will know that approaching half the clubs are already safe from relegation or virtually there, by the start of April that will have narrowed down to perhaps 4 or 5 maybe 6 at a push and some may already be down as in this season.
By now there will be a blueprint in place and then the PL will ask all those concerned their opinions.
Firstly the clubs themselves inform the PL of any dates that they might not want to play at home, that can be for many reasons, sometimes because ground improvements won't be completed in time so they want to be away at the start of the season, but also for local events for instance Chelsea will usually be away on the weekend of the Notting Hill Canrnival.
Then the police get their say and they may request certain fixtures avoid certain dates.
A first draft will then be prepared, this draft will be circulated to not only the clubs but the Football League and the Police, they will look at where risk fixtures may clash, for instance Liverpool & Manchester United will rarely play a London club on the same day. Likewise Leeds going to West Brom and United at Villa would be one to avoid.
Similarly it's not just the actual games but the transport hubs on the rail network are also looked at, things like Millwall & West Ham both having to go out of Euston may see a fixture change, likewise the Police will look at Manchester & Birmingham to see who might be going through these stations at the same time and whether this needs to be changed
So the first draft is often altered, hence all of the fake stories that appear about this time about who we might play on the opening day, given the sheer number of people who will have seen the first draft, it is not surprising that with a day or so to go someone near to the clubs might leak what they know, but the opening day fixtures are probably the most changed due to the aforementioned stadium work issues etc adding to the normal reasons.
But tomorrow we get the definitive version, well almost as because we all know, of the 10 fixtures for every weekend as many as 5 sometimes 6 will be moved for TV.
Photo: Action Images
Please report offensive, libellous or inappropriate posts by using the links provided.
You need to login in order to post your comments
Blogs 29 bloggers
Matches of Yesteryear - Cardiff v U's 11/4/98 by wessex_exile
Here we are then, after a reasonably solid but distinctly dull semi-final first leg lit up by a moment of sheer brilliance by Bramall, just one match away from a socially distanced Wembley play-off final. We may have a slight advantage, but there is of course still much to do, and I can’t imagine for a moment that Exeter will be that shot-shy again at t’other St James’ Park. It’s all about the result though, performance is irrelevant, so I’ll take an even duller 0-0 every day of the week and twice on Sundays. I hope you’re all keeping safe and well, and for those of you blessed with progeny – Happy Father’s Day!
Matches of Yesteryear - Reading v U's 11/11/2000 by wessex_exile
So, after months of uncertainty, here we finally are at the start of a well-deserved play-off campaign. I say well-deserved, though in truth the play-offs ought to have been our minimum aspiration back in August. But sometimes life throws you a curve ball – no one could have predicted back then what the world was going to become, that hundreds of thousands would perish, and that most clubs today are probably fighting for their very existence. In fact, as already mentioned by MFB and Durham, no one could have predicted that were it not for a stirring 3-0 victory at Carlisle in our last match back in March, we wouldn’t have even been in the play-offs. During lockdown, I have been reassured by the honest and stateman-like announcements from our Chairman keeping us all updated, and never more grateful that we have him looking after the club.
Matches of Yesteryear - Millwall v U's 14/4/99 by wessex_exile
And so here we are, at what would have been the last match of the domestic season, at home to FGR, and almost certainly still in with a shout of making the play-offs – maybe even already guaranteed by now. As I look out this morning, it’s a beautiful sunny day, and I would almost certainly already be on the first leg of a train journey to be amongst the faithful at the Jobserve Community Stadium. Given the location of our opponents, I’d probably be sharing the journey with a few hundred FGR supporters too, but they’ve always been a friendly bunch whenever I’ve met them, so I wouldn’t have been too concerned about that. Instead, we sit and wait to see how and when the season may (or may not) finish – strange times indeed…
Matches of Yesteryear - U's v Accrington Stanley 13/1/04 by wessex_exile
Happy Saturday everyone…well, less of the happy actually, with rain falling freely since yesterday afternoon. Still, good weather to be in lockdown for, takes away that feeling that you might be missing out on some quality time outside. In an open letter yesterday to all supporters of EFL clubs, chairman Rick Parry stated “…with or without spectators, delivering a successful conclusion to the 2019/20 season remains our goal to ensure the integrity of our competitions”. If that can be achieved, it appears almost certain these will be matches behind closed doors, streamed live to all supporters – which inevitably will break the long-held Saturday 3pm blackout for televised matches. We all know why that blackout was in place, but this is a difficult time, and it requires an innovative solution.
Matches of Yesteryear - Swansea v U's 7/3/06 by wessex_exile
Good afternoon everyone, I sincerely hope you’re all doing well, and hopefully not going too cabin-feverish! Today would have been a home match against Oldham Athletic, and after our surely guaranteed epic 3-2 victory at Sixfields on Good Friday, it would be just one more victory needed to guarantee a play-off place…think I might have been out in the sun a bit too much over the last few days 😊
[ Vote here ]