Gareth Southgate snubs Arsene Wenger after criticising Arsenal legend’s plans

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Gareth Southgate has decided to snub Arsene Wenger's invitation to talk about the future of international football.

England boss Southgate was expected to be part of crunch discussions between international managers and FIFA's head of Global Football Development via video link on Tuesday.

A second online meeting will also take place on Thursday in a bid to thrash out ideas for a potential new international fixture calendar from 2024, with other topics to be debated including player health, international windows, the frequency of FIFA World Cups and other important issues in the game.

But Southgate has not responded to Wenger's invite and chosen not to be involved in either round of talks this week.

It is understood Southgate, who held informal talks with Wenger earlier this season about the calendar, would prefer to wait until club owners and chief executives have been briefed by FIFA before deciding how to respond.

Some of Wenger's controversial proposals include having just one international window and staging World Cups every two years.

But last week Southgate slammed Wenger's plans as "making no sense", to find himself on a collision course with the former Arsenal boss.

Southgate reckons some of Wenger's ideas have led to huge confusion within the game and he said: "What if your player was injured in October and you miss that one month or however long a break's supposed to be?

What do you make of plans for a biennial World Cup? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.

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"He doesn't play international football for a year. That doesn't seem to make sense to me. I saw some initial proposals and I'm not quite sure exactly what's on the table now."

Wenger admits the input of Southgate and other international bosses is crucial and he said: "As a coach of the men's national teams, their input is essential.

"Opportunities for us to come together are few and far between, but we must embrace these occasions as such dialogue helps us all to protect the unique place that football has in the world and to make it truly global."

  • Gareth Southgate
  • Arsene Wenger
  • Arsenal FC
  • World Cup
  • England Football Team

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