Richard Scudamore: Quotas not the answer

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Premier League chief executive Richard Scudamore says the Football Association should broaden its horizons and not use the influx of foreign talent as an excuse for England.

Scudamore believes the shortage of English players at clubs in the upper echelons of the Premier League has become too much of an obsession, suggesting there is nothing wrong with looking further down the ladder.

The Premier League boss highlights Costa Rica as an example of how it is possible to succeed on the international stage without an array of big-name stars.


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"Widen your horizons," he told the Independent and the Telegraph. "Why shouldn't the England team come from the top 12 teams in the Championship and the bottom 10 of the Premier League if they are English and good enough?

"(Take) Costa Rica. They played well in the World Cup, where are they playing their league football? We get hung up that they can't be good enough unless they are playing for Chelsea or Manchester United."

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FA chairman Greg Dyke earlier this year unveiled proposals to increase the minimum number of homegrown players in top flight squads from eight to 12 over four years from 2016/17.

But Scudamore argues that forcibly pushing more English youngsters into senior squads is not the best way forward.

"I can only reflect the views of our clubs. And they don't believe that tinkering with the quotas is the solution," he said.

"We believe in the investment and progress we are making in youth development. You've just got to produce players who are capable of holding their own at the highest level.

"No-one is saying that is easy but we think quotas artificially protecting the species is not going to be the answer."

Scudamore also revealed he has not given up hope on introducing a 39th Premier League game overseas, but the Primera Division, Serie A or the Bundesliga may get there first.

"They've all got the international round on the agenda. The Italians, the Germans and the Spanish are all looking at how to do it," he said.

"We would still like to do it, but it is less likely for us than it has ever been. I'd be delighted if another country got there first, as it might make it more likely that we would do it. It is shifting, but it's not shifted far enough."

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