The FA win post-Brexit war with the Premier League on overseas talent

EXCLUSIVE: The FA win post-Brexit war with the Premier League on overseas talent with new ’15-point’ system to be introduced before January transfer window… but an ‘exceptions panel’ will rule on youngsters who just fail to meet the criteria

  • The Premier League have struck a deal with the FA on post-Brexit transfer plans
  • In Governing Body Entry system, players will need 15 points to come to the UK
  • The Premier League wanted that number at nine, while the FA pleaded for 18 

The Football Association appears to have scored an initial victory over the Premier League in their bitter, post-Brexit war.

Agreement in principle has been reached by both sides over access to overseas talent for the January transfer window and is now awaiting Home Office sign off.

Sportsmail has seen the criteria, and while the two organisations declined to comment, sources close to the matter have branded it a win for the FA – although concessions have been made and there will be a review in February.

The FA and the Premier League (above) have agreed a post-Brexit deal on signing players

Under the new Governing Body Entry (GBE) system, players will need 15 points to be given the green light to come to the UK. Insiders have disclosed that when talks commenced, the Premier League wanted that figure to be set at nine, while the FA pushed for 18.

Another bone of contention in what has been a long-running two-year battle was access to Under 21 players.

The top flight had wanted a global free market from 18 upwards, believing that restrictions would stop them from competing with top European clubs, who have free access to EU talent.

In what insiders view as another victory for the FA, youngsters will also be subject to the 15-point rule.

Players will need 15 points to come to the Premier League in the Governing Body Entry system

There will, however, be a ‘exceptions panel’ which will then make a call on those who score between 12 and 14 points.

In what is a complex system, based on the quality of the selling club, country represented and standard of each league, an additional three points will also be given to youngsters who have spent a year in ‘top academies’, which appears to be an act of appeasement towards the Premier League. 

A list of clubs whose criteria meet that barrier has been sent to top flight sides. The extensive list of 66 includes top clubs from across Europe and beyond however, there are other lesser illustrious names such as Uruguay’s Club Nacional, Mexico’s CF America and CF Monterrey and Chile’s Colo Colo.

The FA (above) wanted that number set at 18 points while the top-flight bargained for nine

In England, Manchester United, Arsenal, Chelsea, Manchester City, Southampton, Tottenham and Liverpool qualify.

At senior level, an ‘autopass’ system will see those who have regular appearances for clubs ranked by FIFA in the top 50 clubs automatically qualify.

The numbers of foreign players in a first-team squad will remain at 17, despite a desire from the FA in the early stages of talks for that figure to come down.

Premier League players set to be sold will gain more points for being in ‘top-class academies’

To ease FA fears that the top flight will become flooded with foreign youngsters, clubs will only be permitted to sign three Under 21s in the January window. From then on, that figure may double to six. 

There will also be a new loan system and an ‘enhanced games programme’ for academy players.

In an email to the top flight’s clubs, chief executive Richard Masters says he feels the new proposal ‘represents a satisfactory solution for all parties’. Clubs have been invited to give feedback and a vote will be taken, most likely on Monday.

A review will be held in February, with future changes not ruled out. Both the Premier League and FA declined to comment.




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