Newcastle United set for a Premier League winter break – but club won't be able to cash in

Rafa Benitez.
Rafa Benitez.

Newcastle United's players will have a winter break next season – if they can keep the club in the Premier League.

The Premier League agreed a plan to give all clubs a two-week break between fixtures from the 2019-20 season last summer.

And the club are expected to agree this week that the break, which will be staggered over two weekends, will not be used for money-spinning friendlies.

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Football Association chief executive Martin Glenn said: “This is not seen to be a way – and won’t be – of making money.

“The Premier League also feel strongly about it. This will be in their rules, so absolutely not. This has to be a player break.”

Clubs, however, will be able to play behind-closed-doors practice games and hold open days for supporters.

Premier League chief executive Richard Scudamore said: “It’s all come together at a nice time, and it’s now definite. We will have this split weekend, and we are calling it a ‘mid-season player break’.

“We’re not calling it a winter break. Why is that? Because we’re not breaking. We’re playing five games one week and five the other.

"I think that’s positive I think it’s good for English football. I have to compliment Martin Glenn, he doesn’t see anything other than a successful Premier League as being good for English football.”

Rafa Benitez, Newcastle's manager, has used enforced breaks between games to take his players to away for training camps and low-key friendlies for the past two years.

United played Spartak Moscow in February and Royal Antwerp in March last year in Spain.