Premier League worried Brexit will harm league’s global popularity and damage competitive nature

5 Sep

Premier League bosses are becoming increasingly concerned Brexit will seriously impact the league’s competitiveness and global popularity.

The government has been urged to abolish all restrictions on signing foreign players, or risk missing out on some of the best talent in Europe.

The Premier League is worried about the effect of Brexit

An exclusive by The Daily Telegraph has revealed the Premier League fear the next N’Golo Kante would not be granted a work permit after Brexit.

With just over six months until the UK leaves the European Union, the Premier League hierarchy are still waiting for clarification on a number of key issues.

Namely, they want to know if there will be a restriction on signing European players after Brexit and if clubs will have to fill a homegrown-player quota.

There are fears the Football Association will use Brexit as an opportunity to increase the opportunities for young English talent – made more prevalent after Three Lions boss Gareth Southgate bemoaned a lack of English talent at his disposal.

Premier League clubs will not be allowed to sign European players under the age of 18 – like Arsenal did with Fabregas

It has been accepted there it will be almost impossible for clubs to sign European players under the age of 18 like Arsenal did with Hector Bellerin and Cesc Fabregas, or how Manchester United did with Paul Pogba and Gerard Pique.

Their case is supported by statistics proving football should be treated as a special case; the Premier League generates over £3billion in tax for the Treasury and directly employs over 12,000 people.

The main of contention lies in the acquiring of work permits for top players.

According to a study by Harvard data scientist Laurie Shaw, 591 of the 1,022 players signed by top-flight clubs in Premire League history with passports for a country in the EEA would not have qualified for a work permit.

N’Golo Kante and Riyad Mahrez joined Leicester City for relatively low transfer fees and helped the team to a Premier League win in 2016. But Brexit terms may mean they struggle to compete for top-level signings

Shaw’s research shows that less wealthy clubs would suffer the most. Players like Kante and Riyad Mahrez would not have qualified for a work permit according to Shaw.

Most players at clubs such as Leicester City do not feature regularly for top-60 international teams – meaning the competitive balance would skew in favour of far wealthier clubs who can afford to pay bigger transfer fees for players.

‘We can beat anyone on our day’ – James Milner warns Premier League title rivals Liverpool will only get stronger

16 Aug

James Milner has warned Liverpool’s Premier League rivals the Reds are only going to improve as the season goes on.

Jurgen Klopp’s men began their campaign in the best possible way, destroying West Ham United 4-0 at Anfield on Sunday.

Milner was instrumental at Anfield on Sunday

After strengthening in the summer with the recruitment of Naby Keita, Alisson, Fabinho and Xherdan Shaqiri, the Merseysiders look like the side best suited to challenge champions Manchester City this season.

Mohamed Salah set Jurgen Klopp’s men on their way at Anfield before Sadio Mane netted a double and Daniel Sturridge added a late fourth seconds after coming on as a substitute.

It was the type of performance which suggested a threat to Manchester City’s title defence but Milner, said: “That’s for other people to talk about. You guys (media) are going to discuss it, we just want to start the season well and keep improving as a squad and see where that takes us.

“Obviously it is early days and the first game of the season you want to get off to a good start, it is very important.

Liverpool fans are starting to believe it could finally be their year

“It is never easy coming out of pre-season when you have players returning at different times due to the World Cup but you just want to get off to a good start and get a win.”

Milner, at Celtic Park to publicise a charity match next month where he will organise a team to take on former Hoops midfielder Stiliyan Petrov’s side, added: “I thought it was a good performance and I am sure it will improve as the season goes on.

“It was a good starting point, plenty we can work on but the best possible start and hopefully we can kick on from there.

“We feel we can beat anyone on our day, we have proved that but it is about having that consistency and we will know how difficult it is to win a league title and have that consistency and do it over 38 games.

“For us, we will just let other people talk about the challenges, it is down to us to go out there and perform and get as many points as we can.”