Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard has said he believes young players are facing a tough time breaking into the Premier League due to the number of foreign players.
In an interview with BBC Sport, the 33-year-old said he believes managers are having difficulty in taking risks on new and unknown players, and that youngsters seem to be becoming footballers for the wrong reasons.
The interview comes after an influx of foreign players over the summer transfer window, with teams such as Arsenal taking on German midfielder Mesut Ozil for a reported £42.4 million and Chelsea paying £4.1 million for attacker Christian Atsu of Ghana.
"The hard work is only just starting when they come down to Melwood, their careers are just beginning," said Gerrard, speaking to the BBC. "My professional days started when the hard work begun, when I was invited to train with the first team.
"That's when you've got to move people out of your position, that's when you've got to show the manager that you're better than what's in front of you.
"It's even more difficult now for these academy players because there's a lot more foreigners."
Gerrard also added that he thinks managers are having a harder time in taking risks on new players.
He said, "I think it's more difficult for managers to be bold and put a lot of young players in the team.
"Managers are only ever eight to 10 games away from the sack so to take risks on unknown young players is difficult.
"Brendan Rogers has been fantastic at this club because he's been bold and he's been brave and he's given the young players a chance.
"There's no two ways about it, it's a lot more difficult to break through nowadays because of the standard of the players and because there is a lot more foreigners about.
"Thats the whole top and bottom of it."
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