Moyes joins friendlies debate

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Football News

Everton manager David Moyes has added his voice to those questioning the validity of November's international friendlies and claims top players "don't look forward" to representing their country in such matches.

Moyes believes footballers would prefer a break from top-flight football rather than playing matches to help football associations "fill their coffers."

Moyes said: "I think that the international teams feel as if they need the friendlies but I think club managers and myself think the friendlies are not as important as they are made out."

His words echo sentiments expressed by Manchester City boss Mark Hughes and Middlesbrough manager Gareth Southgate, who have both called for the matches to be scrapped because of the unnecessary disruption they cause Premier League sides.

Everton had Ayegbeni Yakubu and Joleon Lescott on friendly duty during the week, while midfielder Tim Cahill also played for Australia, albeit it in a competitive World Cup qualifier in Bahrain.

Moyes continued: "The players deserve a rest as well. Everybody thinks they own a piece of them and they should be playing Saturday, Wednesday, Saturday, Wednesday. I don't know when people think these players get a bit of time to themselves.

"I think the top, top players need a break. So many people take it for granted that they should turn up for an international game and play and it's their duty to do so but it's not.

"The players have to do what is right for themselves and their careers. They are paid by their football club, they are not paid by their associations.

"You only need to see Theo Walcott getting injured this week, think how Arsene Wenger must be feeling and how disappointed they must be that a player has gone away and got injured.

"I think the clubs are right to stand up for their players and I think the players, in a lot of cases, don't look forward to playing in friendly internationals."

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Ayegbeni Yakubu
Manchester City
Mark Hughes
Joleon Lescott
Tim Cahill
Gareth Southgate
Mark Hughes
Theo Walcott

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