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FA unveil tougher rules on foreign players

24/03/2015  Comments (22)  jump

The Football Association has revealed rules to push English clubs to unearth their own academy stars by making it harder for foreign players to secure work permits.

Under stricter rules, approved by the Home Office on Friday and which will come into force from 1 May 2015, the FA will attempt to restrict the number of non-EU players in the Premier League, as they are seen to be blocking the progress of young English talent.

Among the changes are stipulations that

  • Non-EU Players be given points for transfer fee, wages, international caps and the level of league and club they are joining from.
  • Players must be an international from a country ranked in Fifa's top 50, rather than the top 70 as it is currently.
  • The number of caps required will be staggered depending on the country's status.
  • Players from countries ranked in the top 10 will have to have played in 30% of international matches over the past two years while that figure rises to 75% for countries ranked between 31 and 50.
  • There will also be leeway given to players under the age of 21, who are assumed to be less established at international level and therefore need only fulfil the caps criteria for the last 12 months.

FA chairman Greg Dyke, meanwhile, is hoping to raise the existing requirements on homegrown players by raising the quota from eight to 12 in Premier League squads by 2020, with at least two players required to have come through the academy of the club they play for.

He also believes loopholes over what constitutes "homegrown" should be closed so that players will have had to have spent three seasons at English clubs before they turn 18 rather than the current threshold of 21.

Information sourced from Liverpool Echo

Reader Comments (22)

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Michael Kenrick
1 Posted 24/03/2015 at 15:38:32
The Echo headline this story with the observation that, had these new rules been in place at the time, they would have barred the transfer of Bryan Oviedo to Everton.

Oviedo joined Everton in August 2012 from FC Copenhagen for ٠m.

He was 22 at the time and a full Costa Rica international, then ranked 40th in the Fifa world rankings.

Under the new rules he should have featured in 75 per cent of his countryÂ’s international matches since 2010. But after making his international debut against Argentina in January 2010, Oviedo only featured in two of Costa RicaÂ’s next 13 squads.

Matt Traynor
2 Posted 24/03/2015 at 15:43:03
... because the likes of Man City hoovering up Rodwell, Sinclair, Johnson et al for their Euro squads doesn't damage young English talent at all.

The FA under Greg Dyke are really going to live down to the traditional view of what FA stands for.

Clive Mitchell
3 Posted 24/03/2015 at 17:45:12
Matt, 2 - has this right. The FA is blundering into a policy to fail to address a problem that doesn't exist. Where does all the talent that doesn't make it in the PL end up? Playing for Preston, Forest, Rochdale of course. What's the effect of allowing players who are better than that to come to the UK from all over the world? A better standard PL and a more competitive one because teams like Stoke and Swansea have better players to compete against the billionaire clubs. Dyke is deeply unimpressive - remember the B team nonsense - and the PL should quietly let government know that this is simply hampering a major UK business.
Jon Cox
4 Posted 24/03/2015 at 18:44:53
Oh wow, does it ever stop? You can bet your life this has a political angle to it. Greg Dyke? BBC?
A government man in civilian clothes if ever I saw one.

Don't be fooled, this sort of claptrap always comes around when there's a general election on the horizon. It wont happen in a million years.

For all those resident in this country, mark my words. As soon as the election is over, this will die a death along with the reduction of petrol prices.

Cynical? not one little bit. Seen it all before in my life time?

that's a 10-4....

Ciaran Duff
5 Posted 25/03/2015 at 04:36:30
From what I can see, the new rules will favour richer clubs again. With a smaller pool of foreign players available then the laws of supply and demand will mean that prices are pushed up and only rich clubs can pick up the best.

I've never really been in favour of these rules tbh. Firstly, the rules are a bit arbitrary. Why favour higher ranked countries? What happens if you are a fantastic player from a small (low ranked) country? Secondly, as Clive mentions, it is not addressing the real underlying issue which is a lack of local talent in the first place.

Steavey Buckley
6 Posted 25/03/2015 at 06:08:13
Lesser teams than Everton in Europe can sign players from around the world without any restrictions. What the FA are proposing is to favour more powerful clubs in the premier league to obtain the best players from around the world, because they will have escaped restrictions proposed by the FA.
Ian Bennett
7 Posted 25/03/2015 at 07:21:46
I fully expect us to fail to sign someone under this rule, yet a team like Arsenal will have no problem. They signed that Brazilian defender recently with no caps, and previously got away with fake documentation on Edu. How is that right?
Chris Williamson
8 Posted 25/03/2015 at 07:43:36
What blathering bunch of idiots in wing back chairs wrote that set of rules? While I agree with the intent, in typical UK fashion a set of badly written "laws" is writ that are vague, ill thought-out and able to be manipulated by the wealthy clubs who can afford the best solicitors to do so.

The best has to be law two. Arbitrarily it decides that, potentially, the best player in the world cannot come from a country outside Fifa's top 50.

Ghods! I could have done a better job myself, and probably a lot more cheaply.

Eddie Dunn
9 Posted 25/03/2015 at 07:57:11
This policy would reduce the chances of us scouting a starlet in a small African team, for example, taking a chance on him, and he also having an opportunity to play here. Also, the same goes for the Under-21 players, who may have been under the radar and affordable, but now will be wide open for the richest clubs to hoover up.

A poor idea that will not sort out the problem which has got worse because the amounts of money that come with PL status, and the awful consequences that come with losing that position. This is why managers are taking less risk on homegrown players, and would rather employ match-ready internationals with proven pedigree.

Tony Abrahams
10 Posted 25/03/2015 at 08:15:10
Why don't they just introduce a salary cap, so the foreigners want to go and play elsewhere? The reason, because it's more token shite, for the biggest cash cow in the world.

Premier League football is 90% average but the marketing is great, and people buy into the bollocks. Look at English Clubs record in Europe, right now. We have got most of the money but it's making us worse, and as long as clubs stay in the top league, then they are happy.

How can you insult these multi millionaires, in such a superficial environment?

Colin Glassar
11 Posted 25/03/2015 at 08:54:21
Initially, I found Dyke’s idea interesting but after reading some of the comments on here I’m now not so sure. Maybe we need some sort of draft system to redress the balance between the super rich clubs and the rest of us.

For example, in the summer (and January) all the players who want, or are forced, to be transferred go into a big pot. Like in an auction there are minimal bids to begin with, so the likes of Port Vale won’t bid 㿞k for Garbutt, well you get the picture. It would be far more democratic IMO.

Dave Hall
12 Posted 25/03/2015 at 13:51:24
For a global game in the world's biggest professional league, rules enacted by the FA of that league meant to build up the English national team are provincial and damage the ability of the clubs throughout the league to bring in the very best talent. Passports be damned.
Eric Myles
13 Posted 25/03/2015 at 14:25:05
"Players from countries ranked in the top 10 will have to have played in 30% of international matches over the past two years while that figure rises to 75% for countries ranked between 31 and 50"

Should be the other way around, payers from the top 10 ranked countries should be the best so should have no problem with 75% qualification with lower country players only needing 30% 'cos they're not so good.

Frank Crewe
14 Posted 25/03/2015 at 18:23:39
Since Alf Ramsey took over England have had 16 managers. There have been a combined total of 26 World Cups and European Championships. England have only managed to get beyond the group stage in 12 of them and failed to qualify in 8 of them.

The fact is that English players are SHIT!! They can try to restrict the amount of foreign (including Scottish, Irish and Welsh) players as much as they like but English players will still be SHIT.

Apparently I'm expected to believe evil foreign players and managers are stopping any number of young English Messi's from realising their potential just because Harry Kane is having a decent season. Personally I just think he's having a purple patch. Lets see if he can do it next season.

Remember the "Golden Generation"? Gerrard, Lampard, Cole, etc. The only thing stopping them from winning the World Cup was their own lack of talent.

Premier League clubs do not overlook talented players regardless of their nationality. If playing young English players could save them tens of millions in transfer fees then they would play them. But forcing them to play sub standard players simply because they are English is not going to improve the national side or do English clubs any favours in Europe.

If they want better English players then they have to start with the coaching a school level. More ball skills and less competitive games. More investment in facilities and coaches with real qualifications.

Mark Frere
15 Posted 25/03/2015 at 19:31:10
Well that's it then, get ready for a real conveyor belt of young English talent gracing the PL and International scene under these new regulations. Honestly, what a load of nonsense!

A much better system would be to scrap/ban the loan system altogether and have a squad limit of 18 players per club. The 18 players limit should not include players from the academy. In other words, a club can have as many academy players in their squad as they want, just not more than 18 players that they have not developed through their own youth team.

A system such as this would stop the likes of Chelsea stockpiling the best foreign talent from around the world and loaning them out to other clubs to develop. A system like this would force clubs to develop their own English talent and at the same time make the playing field more even. Of course it will never happen because it doesn't benefit the rich SKY clubs.

John Hughes
17 Posted 27/03/2015 at 10:38:37
I wonder which team Gregg Dyke follows? It will more than likely be one of the clubs that have a financial clout so the rich clubs get bigger and the rest just amble along. If they manage to unearth a diamond of a player, along comes one of Sky TVs favourite teams and he's gone.
Ray Roche
18 Posted 27/03/2015 at 11:01:31
John, Dyke is first and foremost a Brentford Supporter where he was Non-Executive Chairman for a while, but also supports Man Utd. (There's a surprise!)
John Hughes
19 Posted 27/03/2015 at 11:24:30
Thanks, Ray, I admire Brentford supporters with Chelski just up the road, but then with Dyke there is Man Utd one of the supported teams in the South East. I knew there would be a Sky favourite connection somewhere.
Patrick Murphy
20 Posted 27/03/2015 at 12:22:40
Having people in positions of power is very helpful and Everton have had those in the past: Carter - Chairman of the Football League... and I seem to remember that Jim Greenwood also spent some time with the FA in some capacity. David Gill, the ex-Man Utd executive, is now Britain's Fifa vice president.

David Dein and other representatives of the 'rich' clubs have shaped the direction of the game for over 20 years, perhaps that is why Everton have failed to grasp the changing face of the game, they don't have anybody capable of or interested in assuming positions of power within the governing bodies.

John Hughes
21 Posted 27/03/2015 at 16:21:36
Yes, Patrick, in the way you spelt it out, I have to agree with you wholeheartedly. Is there anybody besides the Chairman who is interested? I think not.
Andrew Ellams
22 Posted 27/03/2015 at 16:40:39
Eric @ 13, I think the reasoning behind that is it's tougher to get a game for the top teams.
Brian Harrison
23 Posted 27/03/2015 at 17:20:21
Like a lot of new initiatives they look good on the surface but, when you delve into the detail, then the picture is quite different. This will not stop the rich clubs buying whoever they want, and it will be clubs with smaller budgets that will be affected. This rule does not apply to EU nationals, so that gives the rich clubs plenty of scope.

Just like the financial fair play rules looked good initially but just makes sure that the cartel of rich clubs will not have their position challenged. So, even if we were to get a billionaire owner, he would be severely restricted as to how much he could pump in for player transfers. So what happened at Man City will not be allowed to happen as quickly as they progressed.

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