Players have their say

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The Independent Online
Seven out of 10 players have been asked to play when not fully fit and 28 per cent say they are dissatisfied with their managers, according to a survey published yesterday.

The magazine FourFourTwo questioned 2,000 players, managers and supporters on a range of subjects, and came up with some startling results.

"Some of the findings in this survey are shocking and I hope the Premier League, the Football Association, Uefa and Fifa take note of these results," said Paul Simpson, editor of FourFourTwo. "The people who matter in football are clearly not impressed with the way the game is currently being run."

Almost a third of players felt they did not have an open and honest relationship with their manager, and 43 per cent say they are not consulted about decisions that affect their career.

Supporters are unhappy with referees, with nine out of 10 saying they did not think the officials were up to the demands of the game - a view shared by 83 per cent of players.

But the two groups differ on the question of players' wages. The fans think their favourites get too much money, while unsurprisingly, 55 per cent of the players felt they were not receiving fair reward. On the question of tickets, 87 per cent of Premiership supporters thought that the price of admission had reached saturation level.

The managers also get their say, and they are united in their belief that the media have been guilty of trying to have some of their number sacked.

Other topics covered in the survey, which had been approved by the FA and the Professional Footballers' Assoc- iation, include foreign players, the admission process, racism in football and mid-season breaks.

Conspectus Research carried out the survey, contacting 25 supporters from each club in England and more than 1,500 players.