United Kingdom

European Super League 'Big Six' clubs could be BLOCKED from signing foreign players

The Government will come under pressure to prevent the Premier League’s breakaway six from signing foreign players if the European Super League comes to fruition.

There is a feeling amongst English football’s key stakeholders that Liverpool, Arsenal, Manchester United, Manchester City, Chelsea and Tottenham shouldn't be allowed to access foreign talent under new post-Brexit recruitment rules if the controversial new division is started.

The Football Association, the Premier League and the EFL combined to create a points-based system for new overseas signings, which was given the go-ahead by the Home Office last year.

The breakaway teams bound for the European Super League - including Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's Manchester United (above) - could be banned from signing foreign players going forward

Non-UK players are required to obtain a Governing Body Endorsement, tantamount to a work permit, to play in this country with a transfer only immediately approved with a score of 15, with points awarded on a range of criteria including number of international caps and the FIFA ranking of the player’s country.

But the ‘big six’ clubs at the forefront of the European Super League could see their plans to strengthen their squads scuppered by Whitehall if they deem incoming new signings do not meet the criteria.

Manchester City would also be impacted, as would Liverpool, Arsenal, Chelsea and Tottenham who have each pledged their allegiance to the new project

Indeed, two leading Government officials have already spoken out against the European Super League plans.

'I don’t like the look of these proposals, and we’ll be consulted about what we can do,’ said Prime Minister Boris Johnson.

'We are going to look at everything that we can do with the football authorities to make sure that this doesn’t go ahead in the way that it’s currently being proposed.

'I don’t think that it’s good news for fans, I don’t think it’s good news for football in this country.

'These clubs are not just great global brands – of course they’re great global brands – they’re also clubs that have originated historically from their towns, from their cities, from their local communities. They should have a link with those fans, and with the fanbase in their community.

'So it is very, very important that that continues to be the case.'

On Sunday, Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden said: 'Football supporters are the heartbeat of our national sport and any major decisions made should have their backing.

PM Boris Johnson last night condemned six English premier league clubs who announced plans to join a European Super League

'With many fans, we are concerned that this plan could create a closed shop at the very top of our national game. Sustainability, integrity and fair competition are absolutely paramount and anything that undermines this is deeply troubling and damaging for football.

'We have a football pyramid where funds from the globally successful Premier League flow down the leagues and into local communities. I would be bitterly disappointed to see any action that destroys that.'

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