Wednesday July 15 2020
FIFA extend option of five subs to July 2021

FIFA has decided to extend the option of allowing teams to use up to five substitutes and will let the amendment continue for 2020-21.

Serie A decided for the introduction of five substitutes to protect players after the coronavirus lockdown, given the tight programme.

What was expected to be temporary can stay beyond the current season, as FIFA has allowed Leagues to continue applying the amended rule.

The IFAB Board of Directors has, after ‘stakeholder feedback and analysis of the impact of COVID-19 on competition calendars’, decided to let Leagues continue to use five substitutes until July 2021.

The amendment of the rule will be open for international competitions scheduled in July or August 2021 too, like the European Championship next summer.

“Some competitions which resumed in 2020 may have a shorter-than-usual recovery/preparation period before the start of their next season,” FIFA wrote in a statement.

“For many competitions, the 2020-21 season will involve matches being played in a condensed period due to a delayed start and the inability to end later than usual because of major international tournaments.

“There are no changes to the details of the temporary amendment to the Laws of the Game, which will allow for a maximum of five substitutes to be used per team.

“However, to avoid disruption to the game, each team will only have three opportunities to make substitutions, although substitutions made at half-time are not counted as one of the three opportunities.

The statement from FIFA concluded: “The decision on whether to apply this temporary amendment remains at the discretion of each competition organiser.”