The Football Association has announced that a two-week winter break will be introduced for the Premier League from the 2019/20 season onwards.
Congested fixture lists in England’s top flight over the years have taken a toll on national-team players, with the Three Lions in particular feeling the strain at major tournaments.
However, the FA has finally approved a two-week respite in February, having agreed to move FA Cup fifth-round ties to midweek and scrapping replays for that stage of the competition.
League matches will still go ahead during that period, but they will be split evenly over the two weekends.
“This is a significant moment for English football and one that we believe will greatly benefit both club and country,” FA chief executive Martin Glenn said.
“It’s no secret that we have a very congested fixture calendar and over recent years we have been working with the whole game to find a solution.
“Today’s announcement proves that football can come together for the good of the game. We have also found a way to give the players a much needed mid-season break, whilst keeping the much-loved Christmas schedule in place.
“As we head into summer international tournaments in the future we are sure that this mid-season break will prove to be a valuable addition for our players.”