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Hiddink urges doctors to challenge packed fixture list

Football Soccer - Southampton v Chelsea - Barclays Premier League - St Mary's Stadium - 27/2/16 Southampton manager Ronald Koeman and Chelsea manager Guus Hiddink Action Images via Reuters / John Sibley Livepic
Football Soccer - Southampton v Chelsea - Barclays Premier League - St Mary's Stadium - 27/2/16Southampton manager Ronald Koeman and Chelsea manager Guus HiddinkAction Images via Reuters / John SibleyLivepic

REUTERS - Chelsea manager Guus Hiddink has urged doctors at the Football Association (FA) and Premier League clubs to stand up against English football's gruelling fixture list.

Chelsea have to play four games in 12 days across three competitions after the club's sixth round FA Cup tie with Everton was scheduled for March 12.

The Premier League champions visit Norwich City on Tuesday and host Stoke City on Saturday, before their Champions League last 16 second-leg tie at home to Paris Saint Germain the following Wednesday and the FA Cup tie three days later.

"Hopefully the PSG game doesn't go into extra time because players need time when the intensity of the league is like it is," said former Netherlands manager Hiddink.

"The medical people at the FA and the Premier League should make this known. Every club has medical departments. The doctors should stand up and say: 'FA, television, whoever.... hey'," Hiddink told British media.

Chelsea captain John Terry, who has missed three games with a hamstring injury, and winger Pedro, who also suffered a hamstring problem in Saturday's 2-1 Premier League victory at Southampton, are doubts for the PSG game.

Chelsea, struggling in 11th place in the Premier League 11 points off the Champions League qualifying spots, trail PSG 2-1 from the first leg at the Parc des Princes.

(Reporting by Shravanth Vijayakumar in Bengaluru; editing by Ken Ferris)

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