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PFA boss wants quota of home grown players in English football
7:35am Friday 6th September 2013 in Sport
Players' chief Gordon Taylor has thrown his support behind Football Association chairman Greg Dyke's call for urgent change to help the England team and wants to see quotas of at least four 'home-grown' players in clubs' starting XIs.
Taylor, chief executive of the Professional Footballers' Association, said, however, that such a rule would have to be applied across Europe in order to be fair and called on UEFA and FIFA to beef up the regulations.
The Premier League currently stipulates that clubs must contain not more than 17 overseas players in a 25-man squad - but allows any number of under-21s of any nationality.
UEFA's rules oblige at least eight home-grown players - those of any nationality but who have spent three years between the ages of 16 and 21 coming through a club's academy - in 25-man squads.
The PFA chief said that is just window-dressing, and that quotas should target starting line-ups.
Had Luke Shaw been fully fit, that number would have rose to five - and Jay Rodriguez also came off the bench.
Of those six, four were home-grown.
Taylor said: "Throughout the world, and of course in England as the oldest and richest of all the football countries, there should be a duty to the next generation that their aspirations to reach the top level should become a reality if they are good enough and not remain a dream.
"The current 'home-grown' rules are just paying lip service to the idea - they don't have any real impact.
"I believe there should be four home-grown players in every starting XI and that it should apply at least in Europe, but ideally across the world.
"FIFA and UEFA have to address this along with us in England."
Taylor, who will accept any offer of a place in the commission being set up by Dyke, also claimed that the PFA had first raised concerns about England almost 20 years ago, and did so again in 2006, but no meaningful action was taken by the football authorities.
In 1994, after England had failed to qualify for the World Cup, the PFA, aided by some of the most respected names in the game including Sir Bobby Robson, produced a report named 'A Kick in The Right Direction' which identified the need for the country's youth to be given better coaching and more opportunity.
In 2007, the PFA produced what the organisation called the 'Meltdown' report which raised concerns about the top clubs failing to bring through young players and instead buying players from abroad.
Taylor said the PFA was focusing on training players to become coaches, and was pushing for the Premier League and Football League to agree to its proposal that all apprentice players are trained to achieve a UEFA coaching qualification.
England has 1,161 coaches with a UEFA A level qualification compared with 12,720 in Spain and 5,500 in Germany.
Senior players coming through the PFA's coaching system now include Brad Friedel, Scott Parker, Danny Murphy, Jamie Carragher, Patrice Evra, Joe Cole and Ledley King.
Meanwhile, Taylor questioned Dyke's decision to set a target of England winning the 2022 World Cup.
"Of course every team aspires to win a tournament, but once you start to set targets like that you make yourself a hostage to fortune," he said.
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