Mancini and Silva object to international week

MANCHESTER - Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini and his new Spanish forward David Silva joined the growing criticism of next week's international friendlies which have disrupted preparations for the new season.

More than 30 friendlies are being played around the world next Tuesday and Wednesday and Mancini summed up the feeling of many coaches and players on Friday when he said: "I don't understand why, when we have just had a World Cup, there is another match for the national teams.

"Some of our players have just arrived back from the World Cup five days ago, and now they are going back for another international game. We have to accept this but we have only one day to prepare for our first game of the season against Tottenham," he told a news conference at Eastlands.

Silva, a member of Spain's World Cup winning squad, agreed with his new boss. He flies to Mexico for the World champions first match since beating the Netherlands in the World Cup final on July 11.

The forward, who joined City from Valencia for a reported 24 million pounds last month, said it was always nice to be part of the national squad, but added: "When you talk about the date and the timing of the match its not great.

"The League is just about to start in England you need time with your new team mates. There is nothing you can do about the fixture list though, its out of our hands."

Premier League managers Harry Redknapp of Tottenham Hotspur and Arsene Wenger of Arsenal have been highly critical of the friendly date with Redknapp saying it is pointless and will severely disrupt his preparations for their opening League match against City on August 14.

European teams will be using the matches as warm-up games for their opening Euro 2012 qualifiers at the start of September but England midfielder Frank Lampard added: "As a professional... you go and play, but the timing is far from ideal."

No-one from FIFA was immediately available for a comment, although the week has been designated as one for friendly internationals on the international calendar for the last two years.

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