Allardyce: England must change youth policy or risk poor national side

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Sam Allardyce has suggested English clubs must employ similar principles from nations such as Spain, Italy and Holland when developing their academies or risk not having enough home-grown players to choose from.

In July, the West Ham academy was granted category one status, and the Hammers have a well-known history of developing their own young English talent.

The likes of Joe Cole, Frank Lampard, Rio Ferdinand and Jermain Defoe have all come through the ranks at Upton Park and gone on to shine on both the domestic and international stage.

However, Allardyce believes that clubs in England must concentrate on developing their young English players and stop focussing on expanding their academy with players from abroad.

When discussing the youth policies from the likes of Spain, Italy and Holland, Allardyce told Yahoo! in a press release sent to GiveMeFootball: “You don’t see the integration of other nationalities into their academies so I think we need to be a little bit more selfish and pay more attention to developing their own.

“Eventually the England side will be very poor because there are not enough players to choose from now and in the near future if we are not careful there will be even less to choose from.”

Currently, Allardyce has academy graduates Mark Noble, Jack Collison, James Tomkins and Danny Potts at his disposal. 

When reviewing his current crop of youngsters, the former Bolton chief revealed the importance in how these players are introduced to first team level.

“Once they have become part of the first team squad you would try to chose a low key game to introduce them into the team,” said Allardyce.

“Another option is of course sending them out on loan for a while and monitoring them.”

When discussing 18-year-old Potts in particular, Allardyce stated: “ Danny has done particularly well in all departments and hence why he has played in the first team.”


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