FIFA and the International Football Association Board (IFAB) have given the green light for teams to able to make up to five substitutions when football resumes to protect players’ welfare in light of the coronavirus pandemic.
Each side will have only three opportunities, excluding half-time, to make changes in an amendment which comes into force immediately for competitions which start and finish before the end of 2020.
A FIFA statement said: “The decision on whether to apply this temporary amendment will remain at the discretion of each individual competition organiser, while The IFAB and FIFA will determine at a later stage whether this temporary amendment would need to be extended further (e.g. for competitions due to be completed in 2021).”
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If both teams make a substitution at the same time, this will count as one of three opportunities for both sides, while in the event of extra-time, unused changes and chances will be carried over.
Meanwhile, FIFA announced the controversial video assistant referee system that came into force in the Premier League this season could be ditched ‘at the discretion of each individual competition organiser.’
“However, where VAR is used, all aspects of the laws of the game and, by extension, the VAR protocol will remain in place,” the statement concluded.