November 03, 2006

FIFA to limit foreign club players: FIFA and the players union, FIFPro have signed an agreement aiming to give the players an official voice in decision-making. But they are also suggesting implementing a new "five and six" system, whereby at least six of the team must be homegrown.
And speaking of FIFA, the second FIFA beach world cup is on this month.

posted by Fence to soccer at 07:14 AM - 18 comments

Although an English Chelski fan, this is a great idea for the future of the National team. Will put a big premium on British Keepers too.

posted by niall at 09:22 AM on November 03

Excellent idea. It's absolutely retarded Chelsea can field a team in the ENGLISH Premier League that consists entirely of foreigners. As Niall said, this is a good thing as English talent will HAVE to be developed now.

posted by Drood at 12:04 PM on November 03

Not sure what Arsenal will do. I am not sure how I feel about this, but it seems to me that teams should be interested (and allowed) to field a team made up of the best available players, and not the best _______ players available.

posted by scully at 12:24 PM on November 03

I don't think anyone wants to go back to the ugliness of only, or mostly, Brits on the pitch in the EPL.

posted by hotspur5 at 01:29 PM on November 03

I think it's hilarious that FIFA thinks that they can issue a statement saying that they are beyond international laws and can govern itself and it holds weight.. the Bosman decision was the best thing to happen to English football, and it happened in Belgium...

posted by igottheblues at 04:01 PM on November 03

It's absolutely retarded Chelsea can field a team in the ENGLISH Premier League that consists entirely of foreigners. Really? It wouldn't matter to me if my local team in any American sport were comprised entirely of foreign-born players. Why does it matter in the Barclay's Premier League?

posted by yerfatma at 05:10 PM on November 03

Then you clearly have no local pride then do you. I'm not saying a team shouldn't field anyone but locals, but it'd be nice to see actual English players on English teams. I don't think that's too much to ask. It's like the episode of The Simpsons where Burns hires the ringers for the softball team. The way English football is now is that same model applied to the game. If you don't think it's idiotic, then I'm very happy for you, as you're obviously a glorywhore who wants their team to win at any cost. And I find it deeply ironic that you not only name the league but the LEAGUE'S SPONSOR AS WELL. That says everything right there.

posted by Drood at 05:14 PM on November 03

The difference between almost any American sport and the EPL is we don't take our top athletes from each team and play serious games (with the notable exception of soccer of course). We have the occasional Olympics or World baseball tournament or something that goes against this rule, but these happen very seldom. I think FIFA reasons that if teams have to field a team compromised of at least 6 of their national players, then those teams will take more of an interest in developing players instead of buying them. It would possibly serve to create more parity between teams and thus create a better product (depending on your point of view). It definitely would help national teams field better players and this may be where FIFAs interests lie. In the long run, the product may be better due to games being a little closer and Chelsea not just overrunning competition or the product may be worse due to some of the exciting players being missing. But truthfully, I think instead of losing many great players, each league would just swap some of their foreign stars for some of their own (swapping Beckham for Luis Garcia for example) and it would mostly just even out. We'll see over time I guess. As far as FIFA thinking they are above the law, I think the fact that the players union is agreeing with the decision makes that a moot point.

posted by Ricardo at 05:46 PM on November 03

Then you clearly have no local pride then do you. I guess not. Which is strange, given I've fought for the pride of Dover, NH in as many battles as you have for your hometown. My interest is in seeing the best of the best compete. Money talks and bullshit walks and I named "Barclay's" instead of "English" to highlight what makes the league go 'round. It's not English blood. you're obviously a glorywhore Thus the two-plus decades of Red Sox and Pats fandom. I'm currently watching the (Boston) Celtics, a bandwagon jumper team if there ever was one, what with their success over the past decade or so. Truly I am stuck and wriggling on a pin. How should I begin?

posted by yerfatma at 08:31 PM on November 03

This still raises a couple of questions, if they can implement it. Remember the problems with the '3 foreigners' rule in the Champions League in the early 90s? - do players from the whole of the UK count as 'locals' for EPL purposes? In the Champions League, Man Utd players like Giggs (Wales) were included as part of the foreign quota. Which is probably why Fergie overspent on Andy Cole (England) at the time, as I recall. - I also recall something about the European Court being involved, and the quota being removed on a 'restraint of trade' basis. Can anyone confirm this? If so, the legal framework is still there for clubs, players or fans (?) to challenge any restriction imposed by UEFA or FIFA .

posted by owlhouse at 02:50 PM on November 04

owlhouse: The Sports Economist had a piece on that yesterday. Money quote for your purposes:

Now, either this is kite-flying, or there are serious moves afoot to change the legislative treatment of sport in the European Union. In 1995 the Bosman verdict of the European Court of Justice upheld the right of citizens of the EU to play anywhere inside the EU, rendering such restrictions unenforceable. There is an ongoing process organised by the sporting governing bodies, supported by several member states, to change the law. But overruling freedom of movement of labour would be a drastic step.
Emphasis mine. Sadly, no cite on their part.

posted by tieguy at 02:59 PM on November 04

Thanks tieguy. Pity no reference, as the can or worms gets further and further open. I though the Bosman ruling (at its simplest) applied to players out of contract and the issue of transfer fees between clubs. The wider issue of movement of labour emerged from this, but may have been a separate court case (?). As it is, it only applies to EU nationals within the EU states. But what about players not from the EU, of which there are many plying their trade in the EPL and other European leagues? Can a labour regime as proposed by FIFA possibly work in this legal minefield? God knows, and therefore I tend to go with the Sports Economist's view that this is kite flying. Perhaps because Sepp's up for re-election. He will say, or do, anything to shore up his block of votes. For example he was recently in Australia apologising for the poor refereeing that led to Italy's last minute penalty in the second round game. Thanks, Sepp.

posted by owlhouse at 03:35 PM on November 04

The richer clubs will surely overspend to get the best local players but I see this as more of a club v. country move and an attempt to push back on the G-14. Not that it will necessarily be passed by the FIFA congress or allowed by the relevant courts/government entities. Kind of a distraction issues to stop Wenger, Capello, Houllier et al from complaining about the number of national team fixtures.

posted by billsaysthis at 05:17 PM on November 04

Some quotes from Arsene Wenger:

"Football bodies have to care about the level of the game - that does not mean protecting mediocrity." "Elite sport is first about quality. I wouldn't like to say I paid 2m for a player as he has the right passport." "I am just concerned that when you love football, you have not got to act this way and be big enough, and capable enough to say 'you do not play because you are not good enough'. "I would prefer to say 'you make 4million per year in wages because you are good enough', rather than say 'I give you 2m a year because I need you and you have the right passport.'" "What can you say to a guy who pays money to watch your team? 'This player's first touch is not good, yes, we know but he is English. What can I do?' You are telling them 'yes, OK he is not good enough, but we have to play him because he is from the right country'. I would like to say, 'listen, whether he English, South African, French or South American, he is a good football player'. You say to a player, 'you play because you are better'. I have always done that in my life."
I think I have to agree.

posted by scully at 07:57 AM on November 05

so only 1 american on the team damn

posted by luther70 at 09:11 PM on November 05

Of course it is really in the clubs' interests to build grassroots players. Cheaper in the long-run than having to buy in expensive foreign players not to mention the fact that they might hang around if they had more loyalty to the clubs. But I don't think that they could implement this rule, it'd be discrimination on the basis of race isn't it?

posted by Fence at 11:59 AM on November 06

well that sucks becouse argentina soccer is mainly based in players going to foreign countrys

posted by XNEIZE_58 at 04:07 PM on November 08

I think its a brillant idea but will the english league suffer, as they will have to wait for quality players to step in to their places, which may damage the best league in the world. it will come down to whether people cant wait to see the results

posted by Daley at 03:59 PM on November 11

You're not logged in. Please log in or register.