The Professional Footballers’ Association of England is putting pressure on UEFA to require teams to use at least three “homegrown” players -- meaning players who have trained with a given club for at least three seasons between the ages of 16 and 21 -- in their starting lineups in European competitions, the BBC reports. The PFA’s call for the protection of homegrown players comes at a time when the number of English U21 players in the Premier League has dropped to a new low.
However, the report also points out that European Union laws have prevented previous attempts to implement quota systems, but the PFA hopes that the fact that homegrown players don’t necessarily come from the same country as their clubs would help the proposal circumvent EU law.
Of course, the PFA’s efforts are moot if UEFA decides as it has in the past that any quotas be taken by the club’s domestic competition. In this case, that would be the Premier League, which is understood to be against the idea of quotas.