Half-time extended to 25 minutes? Football chiefs to debate radical rule change

Football could soon extend half-time to 25 minutes to allow for Super Bowl-style entertainment

Football's lawmakers - the International Football Association Board - are set to hold their Annual Business Meeting on Thursday. Among matters to be discussed at the virtual gathering will reportedly be a radical request to allow half-time intervals to be extended to 25 minutes.

Current regulations state that 'players are entitled to an interval at half-time, not exceeding 15 minutes'. However, South American governing body CONMEBOL has put forward a motion asking for the international laws of the game to be amended to allow for a ten-minute extension to the break in certain circumstances.

Per a report from the Daily Mail, CONMEBOL want the option of additional time in order to stage extravagant half-time shows, the likes of which are put on each year by the NFL at the Super Bowl.

Commercial slots during half-time at American football's showpiece event went for as much as $5.5million (£4.1m) earlier this year, as companies fought it out to secure 30-second ads before and after a performance from The Weeknd.

Naturally, CONMEBOL aren't going to achieve anything like those numbers with their own half-time shows, but they are evidence of the financial benefits that half-time shows can reap.



As part of their submission, CONMEBOL are even said to have claimed that the extension would allow managers and coaches to better prepare their players for the second period of games.

Experts acting on behalf of the IFAB are believed to have major reservations about the proposal, though, arguing that a longer period of inactivity would increase the potential for players to pick up injuries.

A request for an extension to half-time has already been knocked back in the past

Back in 2009, FIFA made an effort to have half-time intervals increased to 20 minutes, but were forced to backtrack after furious fan reaction to the plans.

Fan response to CONMEBOL's request was no more flattering this time around either.

"As football fans, we get our entertainment from the football itself. If we want dancing or musical entertainment we’d go to a concert," argued one supporter.

Another agreed: "Might be an odd concept but I actually go to a football match to watch the football."

"More brilliance from people who have never played the game. I can hear calf muscles knotting from here," stated a third.

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"Nothing I want less than Adele to come out at half-time whilst we’re getting battered," joked a fourth response.

A final fan, at least, did try and look for a positive in the proposal: "The only possible plus point to this is I could probably fit in another half-time beer with an extra 10 mins," they reasoned.

The Mail's report suggests that CONMEBOL's request is likely to meet a similar fate as FIFA's 2009 attempt, with IFAB officials expected to turn down the change due to their aforementioned concerns over player welfare.

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With the sheer amount of money that such a change could bring, it may become increasingly tough for the motion to be ignored in the long term - given the revenue that could be generated on occasions such as major finals.

Make no mistake, though, this is not a change that football fans want to see.

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