Zut Alors

Thursday, 8 February 2001, 0:01
2 mins read

Signing foreign talent is becoming more and more the norm not just in the Premiership but if you look at all the Division’s in the Football league you’ll find at least one or two foreigners playing for each team at around 90% of clubs these days.

Just look at the Swans now Walter Boyd (Jamaican), David Romo (French) & Savarese (Venezuelan) along with the latest imports on-loan totalling 5 foreigners in a squad of 30+. The worrying aspect of this is that the impact on the National game in Wales and all the home nations will be catastrophic.

The Swans have always been a team who develop their youngsters to form a team and have a lot of respect in the Football League for their young stars often snapping them up off us before they get a chance to blossom in a white shirt. Often these young players go on to wear the Welsh shirt and get many caps but if the present climate continues only a few young players of exceptional talent will make the breakthrough. Many young players don’t develop real quality until later in their career especially defenders. The effect on the National team will be dire as we already slum it out with Vietnam, Lebanon & Malaysia at 110th in the FIFA International rankings, how low can we go! We’re only 8 places ahead of he Faroe Islands for heaven’s sake!

Many put the blame of that at the hands of Cardiff’s own Bobby Gould. The worrying aspect about that is Sam Hammam is bringing together as much young Welsh talent as his wallet can buy for Cardiff. What price is Cardiff’s success if the majority of the future of Welsh football lies in the hands of this incompetent fool!

We’re doomed!

The effect on the leagues quality has obviously been positive, and the youngsters obviously can’t help us out of the relegation zone this season but we have to look at the long-term issues and how the FA works to see how our system fails to produce enough quality in our home-grown players.

Many would say instead of signing these untried foreigners on-loan we would have done better to bring in experienced British talent because of the fast & frantic nature of British football, but the amount of choice for British talent is starting to wane under the present regime. One of the major problems of the FA’s centres of excellence etc is that they’re based under the school years system where if you born in August you belonged to one year group whilst born in September you fall into the next year.

As young boys are coming through the ranks you’ll find that majority of the young players who make it through are born in September/October/November whilst only real quality “early to mature” boys come through in the latter months of this system. If you look at any other FA in Europe/South America selection to year group is principally based on your age and not on your date of birth therefore there are better chances for players born in the latter month’s of the old system to shine through and not quit the game before they’ve even started.

Only if The FA sort themselves can British football rise back up to the lofty heights it once bestowed!

Images courtesy of Getty Images, Athena Picture Agency and Swansea City Football Club.
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