England manager Gareth Southgate will breathe a sigh of relief after Premier League ‘Big Six’ clubs were separated in the last week before the start of the competition World Cup†
Premier League champions Manchester City, with a number of England internationals in Raheem Sterling, John Stones, Kyle Walker, Phil Foden and Jack Grealish, will play at home against Brentford that weekend.
Liverpool, expected to send Trent Alexander-Arnold and Jordan Henderson to Qatar, will take on Southampton at Anfield.
Manchester United, with several England internationals such as Harry Maguire, Luke Shaw, Jadon Sancho and Marcus Rashford, will take on Fulham in Craven Cottage.
Chelsea also have a strong English contingent, with Mason Mount, Reece James and Ben Chilwell all likely to be in Southgate’s World Cup roster. They take on Newcastle at St James’ Park.
Arsenal could contribute several players to England’s World Cup squad, including Bukayo Saka, Aaron Ramsdale and Ben White. They face Wolves at Molineux.
Meanwhile, Tottenham and star striker Harry Kane take on Leeds United at home that weekend.
Qatar 2022 will be the first time the World Cup will be held in the Northern Hemisphere in winter.
The tournament’s unusual timing has caused major concerns for domestic leagues in Europe, forcing the Premier League to schedule a gap-season of more than six weeks to accommodate the league.
England boss Southgate has expressed concern at the rapid turnaround for his players from club duties to international football.
In March, he spoke about the difficulties he would face if high profile matches were to take place just before the start of the World Cup.
“What would help is if we don’t get a derby or those kind of ‘big six’ games,” Southgate said.
“But it is not the League’s fault that the World Cup is held in the winter.”
The final Premier League games before the winter break take place just eight days before England face Iran in their first World Cup game on November 21, the opening day of the tournament.
The Three Lions will then face the United States on November 25 and Wales on November 29 in their remaining group matches.