Gary Neville: 'Foreign footballers stunting English players' growth'

Neville: 'Foreign players harming English counterparts'
© PA Photos
Gary Neville claims that clubs in England should maintain faith in budding young English footballers and not replace them with foreign players.

Former Manchester United defender Gary Neville believes that the influx of foreign footballers in the Premier League is adversely affecting the growth of young English players.

The 38-year-old, who is part of Roy Hodgson's coaching staff of the England national team, says that clubs should give more chances to local English players.

"There's a tipping point that we've gone beyond in England," BBC Sport quotes him as saying. "I think it is 35% [the proportion of English players in the Premier League] and that is too low. In Spain, it's about 63%, which sounds about right. We're maybe 20% off.

"We need to give more chances to our own. We're harming ourselves a little bit. I've watched Chelsea beat Manchester United [in the FA Youth Cup], I've watched Manchester City beat Manchester United in the Youth Cup.

"I've seen these players - Josh McEachran (on loan from Chelsea to Middlesbrough) and others. Where are they? I can't work it out. The question is, 'Is the talent being produced or is the talent being lost?' I think there are definitely pathways being blocked."

Neville made 85 appearances for England during his playing career.

England coach Gary Neville before a training session on October 11, 2012
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TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Manchester CityMan City24212170185265
2Manchester UnitedMan Utd24165349163353
3Chelsea24155445162950
4Liverpool24138354292547
5Tottenham HotspurSpurs24136547222545
6Arsenal24126645311442
7Leicester CityLeicester249783632434
8Burnley249781921-234
9Everton2477102639-1328
10Watford2475123344-1126
11West Ham UnitedWest Ham2468103042-1226
12Bournemouth2467112536-1125
13Crystal Palace2467112237-1525
14Huddersfield TownHuddersfield2466121941-2224
15Newcastle UnitedNewcastle2465132234-1223
16Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton2458111733-1623
17Stoke CityStoke2465132550-2523
18Southampton24410102435-1122
19West Bromwich AlbionWest Brom24311101931-1220
20Swansea CitySwansea2455141535-2020
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