Everton manager David Moyes has
criticised the early kick-off time for Saturday's English FA Cup
semi-final with city rivals Liverpool at Wembley.
The game in London starts at 12:30pm local time and
both sets of fans will have to set off very early from the
north-west city or stay Friday night in the capital to make the
"I feel for the supporters. Of course, we will get a full
house at Wembley but it's a difficult time for supporters,"
Moyes was quoted as saying by the Daily Telegraph on Friday.
"You are making it as really awkward as you can to get
there. To get to London for 12:30 on a Saturday isn't an easy
thing, without maybe going and staying overnight or getting away
really early in the morning. That has been a little bit unfair
on both clubs from up here."
The FA has also been lambasted by Chelsea for making the
Londoners play the second semi-final against Tottenham Hotspur
on Sunday evening ahead of a Champions League semi-final first
leg on Wednesday at home to holders Barcelona.
Still paying the bill for the rebuilt Wembley, the FA has
been forced to again play the semi-finals at the 90,000-seater
London venue when an Everton v Liverpool clash at Manchester
United's nearby Old Trafford would have suited fans better.
Television contracts dictating kick-off times and Liverpool's
wish not to play on Sunday, the anniversary of the Hillsborough
disaster, have tied the FA's hands it says.
Horse racing's Grand National also takes place in Liverpool
on Saturday further complicating travel plans.
Everton, seventh in the Premier League one place above their
more illustrious city rivals, are gunning for their first major
trophy since beating Manchester United in the 1995 FA Cup final.
Moyes, in charge since March 2002, is among the bookmakers'
favourites to one day succeed Sir Alex Ferguson at Manchester United
given he continually leads Everton to top-half finishes in the
Premier League despite limited resources.
His straight talking has also led to comparisons with his
"We have to watch that we are not making football too
awkward for the supporter who has to go to his job," Moyes said.
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