Fifa criticised for lack of mandatory rest periods in new women’s calendar

Governing body announces new schedule from 2026Schedule has five windows but same amount games in Europe

Fifa has announced a new four-year women’s international match calendar which will come in from 2026 but faces criticism for not including mandatory rest periods and undermining domestic leagues.

The new international match calendar, which the global governing body said has a “player-centric focus” and “is backed by extensive research, analysis and consultation” includes a welcome reduction in the number of international windows from six to five. These windows will be placed in February-March, April, May-June, October, and November-December, removing the heavily criticised July and September windows – the former falling well after domestic season’s have ended and the latter disrupting pre-season preparations, for those leagues operating across the winter.

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