Dein sees sense in Dyke's plan

14 May 2014 05:01

Former FA vice-chairman David Dein says current chairman Greg Dyke's radical blueprint for change should be given a chance - and shrugged off suggestions that foreign players alone were to blame for the decline of English football.

Dein, who was FA vice-chairman and held the same role with Arsenal, says Dyke's detailed report into the state of the game was a genuine attempt to redress the national team's deficiencies despite the unpopularity of some its recommendations.

Speaking at the Soccerex Asian Forum on the banks of the Dead Sea, Dein bemoaned the fact that only 30 percent of Premier League players were currently available to play for England - and lauded the efforts of Dyke and his team of experts.

Dein, who helped create the Premier League in 1992, said: "It was not on the agenda that 70 per cent of players in the league now would not be English.

"When we formed the Premier League we did not envisage at the time it would be so heavily populated by overseas players.

"But it's a cheap shot to blame the overseas players. You don't really want to stop talented players coming in but there are too many coming in who don't make it to the top and then go back. There needs to be a filtering of the process.

"If you ask any fan, their first loyalty is almost always to the club they support. The national team always comes second. I agree something had to be done and all credit to Greg Dyke for shaking the tree."

Dyke's controversial report, proposing B teams in a new League Three and a restriction on work permits, has caused widespread consternation but Dein added: "We have to be smarter than that and look in our back yard.

"That should be our own focus which comes down to grassroots football as well as coaches."

Dein admitted that not everything in Dyke's package would be implemented but added: "England is streets ahead commercially than its neighbours in France and Italy and Spain but what we haven't got is what's going on on the field of play.

"That's where there's room for improvement. Is it flawed? Yes - but you don't make progress unless you are prepared to stick your neck out."

Source: PA

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