President of the Italian FA (FIGC) Carlo Tavecchio has renewed calls for the top two divisions of Italian football to be reduced in size to help free up time for the national team.
Italy coach Antonio Conte saw his request for a meeting earlier this month rejected by the clubs, who did not want to deprive themselves of players during the season on dates which were not set aside for internationals by FIFA.
According to Tavecchio, that could be avoided in future if there were fewer sides in Serie A and fewer games to be played. And the FA chief is set to push on with plans to reduce Serie A to 18 clubs and Serie B to 20.
"Serie A and B both need to be reduced by at least two clubs both for national team purposes and for other reasons," Tavecchio told RAI GR Parlamento radio. "We need to do things in keeping with a healthy game and the clubs' responsibilities without there being any friction on future training camps.
"We are on course for qualification for the European Championship and we still have problems and I don't understand it."
Serie A risks being reduced to 19 sides sooner than Tavecchio might have planned with Parma fighting to avoid bankruptcy before the end of the season.
"We're working with the tribunals, with the mayor [of Parma], the associations and the Lega [Serie A] to identify a way," Tavecchio added. "It's inconceivable that the season might finish without them. We're going to see Parma back in action on Sunday in a situation which is not clear. Let's hope it becomes clear in the future to guarantee and respect the rules."
Serie A was made up of 18 clubs until 2004-05, when the field was increased to 20.