Club vs Country

The 2008 Damallsvenskan has an unprecedented number of foreign players from an unprecedented number of countries. This has brought some controversy and a league table in some disarray.
It started when FIFA decided to add a protected date, for the Brazil-Ghana play-off for the Olympics, to their international match calender late in March. Since both Umeå and Linköping has Brazilian internationals on their teams, matches had to be moved. Then AIK's two Australians was called up for the Asian Cup, played in May/June and also played on FIFA protected dates, which prompted even more moved matches.
There has been some upset discussions about this. Both FIFA and the Swedish Football association has been accused of incompetence. Umeå wanted to add a few weeks at the end of the season to get room for the moved matches, since the final matches are scheduled already in the middle of October. It would have been a good suggestion, if it had been brought up before the schedule was set. Clubs that have been measuring out the contract time meticiously for their expensive foreign players wouldn't be happy if the league final suddenly was moved two weeks ahead.
AIK's sport director Peter Johansson has taken the, in my opinion, only reasonable stand on this issue. Even if he didn't hesitate to use the possibility to move matches during de Vanna's and Gill's absence, He suggested that the league schedule should be made with consideration to UEFA matches and world tournaments only. If players are called up for other protected dates, you just have to let them go and play anyway. "Chelsea didn't reschedule any matches just because Drogba played in the African Cup".

Göteborg's head coach Torbjörn Nilsson had another take on the club vs country issue, when he accused the national team's fitness tests for Lotta Schelin's prolonged thigh muscle injury. Schelin was hurt during the tests, initiated by the Olympic Committee, just prior to Algarve Cup. Nilsson heavily questioned the idea of making maximum load tests. This kind of tests are designed to strain the muscles right up to when they burst. They are dangerous and pointless, he claimed.

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