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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

England Weighs Curbs on Foreigners




-- The English Football Association is considering applying UEFA restrictions on foreign players to the premier league -- a move that could exclude many Scottish, Welsh and Irish players.


UEFA permit only three foreigners plus two assimilated players in European cup ties, which has badly affected some English clubs, including Manchester United, who have a number of players from the other British countries in their sides.


But English F.A. chief executive Graham Kelly told an English Sunday newspaper that they were considering following UEFA's lead if it was good for England.


"We are looking at the situation," said Kelly. "We believe there is a need to examine current regulations to determine if it would be advantageous to the English game and the production and progress of our own players to apply a similar classification to Europe.


"We are also seeking to explore the possibility that such a move would have a beneficial effect on spiralling transfer fees."


It would mean that players like Aston Villa's Dean Saunders, Everton's Neville Southall, Ian Rush of Liverpool, Manchester United's Mark Hughes and Gary McAllister of Leeds would be regarded as foreign.


Seven players Manchester United fielded on Saturday against West Ham would be affected, while Aston Villa and Everton each had six non-English players in their sides.


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Many English football stadiums are still potentially dangerous places where catastrophes like the Bradford City fire or the Hillsborough disaster could happen again, a British television program asserted this week.


Filming secretly at grounds since the start of the season in August, the "Dispatches" program showed exit gates locked and unattended, exit signs missing, stewards and spectators smoking in wooden stands, stewards watching the match instead of monitoring the crowd, and combustible waste accumulating under stands.


The program that found that English league clubs had learned little from the 1985 Bradford fire which claimed 56 lives or from the disaster four years later at Hillsborough in Sheffield in which 96 people were crushed to death. (AP, Reuters)