Rio Ferdinand suggests improvements to increase quality of English football
Rio Ferdinand believes massive improvements and restructuring needs to be done in order to better English football. The veteran defender suggested a quote system which guarantees a specific number of English players to play in the Premier League.
The Manchester United center half acknowledges that the European Union law will make such a step impossible. However, Ferdinand insists it’s a “disgrace” to see that homegrown players are given few opportunities to rise because of the massive inflow of foreign players.
Ferdinand, who has won 81 caps for England and captained as well, admits he is worried about the future of English football. Ferdinand urged football bodies to take strong steps in strengthening the new generation of English football.
Football Association (FA) chairman Greg Dyke also highlighted similar concerns. In a recent press conference, Dyke admitted strong steps needed to be taken to rejuvenate football in England.
Ferdinand explained that lack of English players in the Premier League “diminishes” the quality of the England national team.
“Having so few English players in the Premier League diminishes the English team, of course it does,” Ferdinand told Mail on Sunday. “Look at the Manchester City game recently against Newcastle. There was barely an English player on the pitch, three out of 22 starters.
“That is a disgrace. If you look at it and ask whether there should be a stipulation that you have a minimum number of players who are English, even just in your squad, I think that should happen.
“If you look at a lot of teams, there are England players who aren't playing for their clubs -- yet we're hoping to go to a World Cup and do well.”
Ferdinand hopes England will walk along the same lines as Turkey, who have made it compulsory for all teams to keep Turkish players in the majority of each squad.
“I would do what Turkey do, and have limits. In that country, clubs can have a maximum of 10 foreign players on the books, and no more than six in any 18-man matchday squad,” Ferdinand added.
“I know that European laws won't let a legal quota happen. So you can't do that. But if you want to protect English football and its heritage and its future, something like that has to be done.”