PERTH Glory goalkeeper Danny Vukovic and Adelaide United defender Osama Malik have called for afternoon games to be abolished in the future following last month’s controversy at nib Stadium.
Glory and United were forced to compete in "mad dogs and Englishmen" mid- afternoon conditions of 33 degree heat in their round six clash in mid-November when the game kicked-off at 2.30pm.
Both teams and the PFA had agreed to delay the kick-off a few hours but it was blocked by Football Federation Australia and Fox Sports.
“It’s unfortunate the way it happened because both teams had agreed to delay the game not only for us but for the supporters as well,” said Malik.
“A lot of the stadiums aren’t completely covered so some fans aren’t as likely to come to watch a game if they are going to watch it in 32 degree heat with no shade.
“Not only for players but for the spectators as well, maybe games should be delayed if the weathers a bit warm.
“It’s hard because these things are in the hands of Foxtel so they have the bargaining power and they can do what they want.
“But if you want the best out of the players then playing in cooler conditons is going to help produce better football.
“It makes sense to me that games should be played later so players can actually run around and not struggle from heat exhaustion.”
Vukovic also questioned FFA’s scheduling and called for afternoon games in Western Australia to become non-existent next season.
“They need to scrap afternoon games completely,” said Vukovic. “Especially in Perth, our summer is very hot and we rarely get a cool day.
“If they are scheduling games in summer in 2pm there’s a good chance it’s gonna be in the 30s.
“I think next season hopefully they have a real good look at that and change that. Our first three home games were 2pm kick-offs.
“It’s true both teams have to play in it but we played three home games in a row in some very tough conditions and over time that takes its toll.
“I know the club was working with the PFA to change that game. They did their best but for whatever reason the FFA and Fox Sports weren’t able to change it.
“Thankfully for us we don’t have anymore afternoon games in the foreseeable future at home which is a positive.
“But at the end of the day the games are scheduled when they are scheduled and we just have to do our best.”
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