England should follow European example with winter break, says Schalke star Holtby

The Bundesliga youngster feels players in the Premier League would benefit from having a rest over the festive period, as injuries can build up with so many games close together.
Schalke's young star Lewis Holtby believes the Premier League would benefit from a winter break akin to that in league across Europe, as players would be able to get some much-needed rest over the festive period.

The 22-year-old's Bundesliga side played its last match of 2012 on Friday and will not play again until January 19, giving the club a break of more than four weeks. With the likes of league leaders Manchester United facing six games in that period of time, Holtby thinks it would be good for players in England to be able to spend the Christmas period with their families instead.

"I know how ­important football is to English fans over the Christmas break, but it must take its toll on the players," Holtby told reporters. "The break in the Bundesliga gives everyone the chance to have a rest.

"We also get the chance to go back and spend time with our families over Christmas, which is important. For the rest of us it doesn't make too much sense, ­because when players are tired and playing so ­regularly you do pick up little niggles and ­injuries."

Arsenal star Santi Cazorla also recently backed a winter break for clubs in England, stating it would be a psychological boost for players to be able to disconnect from the game over the holiday season.

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