Premier League Homegrown Rule For Players Explained Fully

What is the Premier League homegrown rule, AKA Premier League foreign players rule?

It is a law that has been in the premier league for quite a while, but the rule began receiving high reinforcement following the appointment of Greg Dyke, the former chairman of the English Football Association (FA), who actively sought more English players in English teams.

Premier League homegrown rule is aimed at limiting Non-English and Welish players from flooding any of the 72 English Club and increase the chances of more England and Wales born to start playing in top-flight teams from a very young age.

This rule is the major component of the League’s Elite Player Performance Plan and the root of its principle and focus.

So what counts as a homegrown player? What does homegrown player mean? Let's now see how many foreign players can play in Premier League.

Premier League Homegrown Rule

The Standard Rule

With more than 150 players dominating English football between 2013 to 2016, Dyke enforced the Homegrown player rule as an initiative to give younger domestic players to be developed from a very young age.

The rule targets development rightfrom the root, which are Club academies to the senior team.

For the Senior team, every premier league club is mandated to list a 25-man squad in which a minimum of 8 players must be a Homegrown player.

The list could reach a maximum of 25 but must not fall below 8.

With all things equal (no winter transfer), this implied that at least 160 Homegrown players must be available for play in the EPL at any time.

 This did not guarantee that they will be fielded in games.

This rule is pretty much the standard that is being upheld to date, with all clubs listing at least sevenhomegrown players.

Non-England And Non-Wales Born, But Homegrown

The name,Homegrown player, is often misleading.

On the surface, it is supposed to mean English or Welsh players, but it is more like an Umbrella term for youngsters in English Club academies.

The rule proposed that any U.K-born player will be automatically considered as Home-grown, and any player to have played for an English club for at least three years before turning 21 will be considered as Home Grown.

The first law condition simply meant the player must be from the U.K to be considered Homegrown.

The second, however, did not consider Nationality as criteria but football academies.

Usually, academies are dominated by young U.K starlets, but other nationals also play in the academies, and if these latter set plays for 3 years in their respective academies before turning 21, they will be consideredhomegrown.

This second criterion meant that a Nigerian who, just before turning 18, travel to England and joined any English academy would be considered a Homegrown player if he stays with the team until he turns 21.

This sort of left a loophole Inthe FA part as Non-U.K players like RomeluLukaku (Belgium top scorer), Cesc Fabregas (Spain), Paul Pogba (France), and Victor Moses(Nigeria) were all considered homegrown.

This meant that a club could list only 7 players, with 4 of those being Non- English and only realistically have 3 English home players.

Attempt To Fix Premier League Homegrown Rule Loophole

The rule still and the so-called Loophole still stands to date, but Dyke, and some other stakeholders have continued to clamor for a change of the second criterion.

Dyke suggested that young starlets should only be considered as Homegrown if they have played for three years in any academy before turning 18.

This, if implemented, will restrict more Non-nationals from joining England-based academies as a player will have to join the academy at the age of 15 to meet the requirement.

Football rules prohibit the traveling of players younger than sixteen overseas for any football-related purpose.

Dyke claims that the suggestion is to help the England National Team have a fighting chance in the 2022 Qatar world cup.

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The proposal is yet to be accepted as it stands.

This article was most recently revised and updated 3 years ago