The Football League have responded to claims by David Moyes that Everton have been shown a "lack of respect" over Carling Cup fixture scheduling.

The Blues are currently in Portugal for a Europa League tie against Benfica on Thursday which is followed by a Barclays Premier League match at Bolton on Sunday and then a Carling Cup fourth-round tie at Tottenham 48 hours later.

"I find the lack of respect we have been shown by the Carling Cup organisers really disappointing," Everton manager Moyes said.

"My philosophy has always been to try to put our best teams out in whatever competition we enter but we've been asked to play Tottenham at White Hart Lane on a Tuesday night after playing the previous Thursday and Sunday.

"I am aware that other clubs will have a similar scenario, but they haven't got games on Thursday and again on the Sunday."

The Football League stressed that scheduling was a "fundamental problem", and insisted they had tried to overcome the fixture pile-up but could not due to the televised Arsenal versus Liverpool match next Wednesday.

A Football League spokesman said: "The scheduling of the fourth round of the Carling Cup was always likely to be challenging due to the two major Merseyside clubs being drawn away against the two main north London clubs.

"These problems were further heightened by three of the four clubs having Premier League matches on the previous Sunday.

"The fundamental problem facing domestic fixture planners is the increasing number of dates being utilised by UEFA for European competitions, especially with matches in the Europa Cup being played on Thursday evenings.

"In an already crowded fixture calendar it is becoming harder and harder for domestic football bodies to find dates that suit all parties."

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