Spanish teams granted right to water break in extreme heat

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Madrid : The Royal Spanish Football Federation (RFEF) has granted teams the right to request water breaks when playing in temperatures exceeding 30 C (86 F) in the months of May, June, July, August and September.

RFEF Circular No. 12 regarding "cooling breaks" allows teams to ask the referee for two water breaks, to be given in the 30th and the 75th minute of a hot game, reports EFE news agency.

The new rule states that a water break request should be submitted from a team at least 30 minutes before the match starts, and that the referee will then consult on whether or not to allow the water break with an authority from the opposing team.

Should the two teams have opposite positions regarding the "cooling break," the referee will be the one to decide if the break will be given or not, bearing in mind the health and security of the players and referees.

If a water break is to be given, the referee shall communicate this decision before the game starts.

The referee has the right to change his decision amid changing weather conditions.

Each "cooling break" is to last for a maximum of three minutes, during which the referee will add the break time to the end of each half's stoppage time.