Should the A-League drop one foreign spot?

Nicholas Rupolo Roar Guru

By Nicholas Rupolo, Nicholas Rupolo is a Roar Guru

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24 Have your say

    It seems over the past few years, the foreign players in the A-League have dazzled in the world’s greatest sport and made it famous in Australia.

    Players like Alessandro Del Piero and Marc Janko have brought the A-League to the attention of the rest of the world, but is five foreign players too much?

    Australia recently hosted the Asian Cup in January, in which the Socceroos stole the show in an emphatic and exciting tournament.

    But what was also on display was other players from other nations in our confederation, in which most of them play in Asia or the Asian Champions league.

    The A-League should embrace the same rule given to the Asian Champions League, the ‘3+1 rule’.

    Teams are allowed three foreign players plus one foreign player from an Asian country. This means taking away one foreign player’s spot.

    By implementing this rule, it would give other Asian players the chance to play for more Asian clubs and help the A-League teams to familiarise themselves with the competition.

    And also to not crop an important foreign player which detracts from their performance.

    Take Sydney FC for example. They have now filled their five foreign spots with Miloš Ninkovic, Miloš Dimitrijevic, Filip Holosko, Jacques Faty and Mickaël Tavares.

    Three of these players are eligible to play, but the other two aren’t, because none of them are from an Asian country.

    This means that two experienced players will not be able to play in the Champions League. This could hurt their performance in the competition.

    It would give the A-League an opportunity to embrace the confederation it is in and bring in other Asia-based players. We saw it from Western Sydney with Yusuke Tanaka and Yojiro Takahagi and the Newcastle Jets with Li Ki-je.

    As the Whole of Football plan released earlier this year states, “we want football to be the largest and most popular sports in Australia”

    Asia is the future of football, and is quickly becoming one of the game’s most prominent areas. With a large majority of the world’s population and participation rates, it’s no wonder.

    This brings into question, should we drop one foreign spot and fill one with a player from an Asian country?

    I’d like to hear your thoughts on this topic, one of the most frequently debated of the past few months.

    Have Your Say



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    The Crowd Says (24)

    • August 1st 2015 @ 2:25am
      Johnno said | August 1st 2015 @ 2:25am | ! Report

      No. I’d have more foreigners 8 per side. Only spot I would ban foreigners is goal-keepers, as I want aussie keepers developed. Maybe there are bans on foreign keepers as I see none in the A-league.
      I’m hoping the A-league can become the EPL in style(lots if not all foreigners) and the state-leagues become the developer for aussy talent, and the best go to A-league 5 per side, and the better ones go to Europe.
      As higher playing standards in A-league bring in higher revenue, and that filters down to other levels, eg the Aleague youth-league, as more cash for development.
      1 Asain foreign import on each teams books should be non negotiable too. Good to integrate with AFC.

      • August 1st 2015 @ 3:14pm
        juan dos said | August 1st 2015 @ 3:14pm | ! Report

        And do you hope our national team results mirror England’s too? It’s pretty well documented that the EPL has been bad for English player development, I’d much rather our league look towards the Bundesliga as a top league to aspire to be like. Of the big four (Serie A, La Liga, Premier League, Bundesliga) it’s pretty obvious which one is the best run.

        • August 1st 2015 @ 3:48pm
          Johhno said | August 1st 2015 @ 3:48pm | ! Report

          juan England has made very WCup since france 98. They have been knocked out of a few on penalties,same with Euros. England have 4 divisions, plenty of the best english players still get a chance.

        • August 1st 2015 @ 3:52pm
          melbourneterrace said | August 1st 2015 @ 3:52pm | ! Report

          Ridiculous argument, it’s not well documented and you have made that up. The English Football team have been dreadful long before the EPL or foreign transfers were a thing. Anyone who knows anything about English football knows that the lack of formally educated coaches and prehistoric youth development techniques in England is absolutely to blame for the lack of truly world class english players coming through.

      • Roar Guru

        August 1st 2015 @ 7:07pm
        Nicholas Rupolo said | August 1st 2015 @ 7:07pm | ! Report

        8 is way too much, surely in our early years we should be cropping Australian players as much as possible, it wouldn’t be there for players like Mooy or Antonis who have had interest form overseas.

        Also if you do this, Does this affect the asian champions league performance for the teams that qualify with the 3+1 rule.
        And most importantly, what about the salary cap?

    • August 1st 2015 @ 2:58am
      RBBAnonymous said | August 1st 2015 @ 2:58am | ! Report

      I think 5 is about right. In regards to clubs in the ACL. They will still need all those foreign players only two will have to sit out in the ACL. The ACL is very taxing and surely other results in the A-league will suffer as a result.

    • August 1st 2015 @ 3:45am
      Melbourneterrace said | August 1st 2015 @ 3:45am | ! Report

      Absolutely not, if anything we should be increasing foreigners. it’d be utterly ridiculous when at most we’d have 3/10 clubs playing in the AFC Champions League. Even if that increased, the foreigners are what are the actual quality to the league and the AFC changes their rules so often that basing league rules on AFC rules would be madness.

      • August 1st 2015 @ 9:36am
        fadida said | August 1st 2015 @ 9:36am | ! Report

        Tend to agree. Providing the players brought in are better than those available domestically

    • August 1st 2015 @ 7:30am
      Gareth said | August 1st 2015 @ 7:30am | ! Report

      4+1 I would be happy with. I think it would encourage involvement in the Asian competition but still enables clubs to sign high quality professionals from overseas. Reducing to 3+1 would be a mistake I think.

      Sydney will only be able to take 3 of their international players into the ACL, but this means they will always have at least 2 european players fully fit and ready to go in the A League. Pros and cons of both.

    • Roar Guru

      August 1st 2015 @ 9:47am
      Fussball ist unser leben said | August 1st 2015 @ 9:47am | ! Report

      Definitely NO to more foreigners. Not fussed with less, but happy to remain with the current 5 maximum.

      Ideally I’d like a 4+1 Rule: Maximum 5 foreigners, but 1 must be from the AFC (OFC for NIX).

      I want my local Australian football league to feature the best Australian talent, with help from a few undervalued foreign gems.

      When I look at overseas football leagues, I much preferred watching English top club football & European top club football when there were few foreigners in the teams.

      When you look at the 1979 European Cup final 2 things stand out:

      1. The Finale was Nottingham Forest vs Malmo – 2 clubs that will NEVER again be able to achieve that lofty high.. unless some billionaire buys the club

      2. Forest did not have a single player from outside England & Scotland. Malmo did not have a single player from outside Sweden

      It would be great if every football league had restrictions on foreigners. Every competition would be more vibrant & so many of the world’s best footballers wouldn’t be sitting on the bench every week.

      • Roar Guru

        August 1st 2015 @ 7:03pm
        Nicholas Rupolo said | August 1st 2015 @ 7:03pm | ! Report

        That’s a great idea but we also want to crop more aussie players into the league, would want us to become like the epl where over 65% of the league is foreign. But then again they are the biggest league in the world, could the a-league follow that same path?

      • August 2nd 2015 @ 9:29pm
        bryan said | August 2nd 2015 @ 9:29pm | ! Report

        Gee,I hate it when I agree with you,Fuss! 🙂

      • August 3rd 2015 @ 11:20am
        Brendo said | August 3rd 2015 @ 11:20am | ! Report

        100% agree Fuss, 4+1 would be ideal.

        Also reducing by 1 Foreign Spot adds 10 extra Australians to the total player pool. Adding 1 team adds around 15 Australians. Better to add more teams than reduce Foreign places.

    • August 1st 2015 @ 9:48am
      nordster said | August 1st 2015 @ 9:48am | ! Report

      I guess it all hinges on whether it will make the playing field more level? 😉

      Overseas talent makes such a difference that under the current equalisation philosophy of the league, it would be better to reduce these x-factor, exciting elements…in favour of ‘competitive balance’….

      😉 😉 😉

      🙁

      • August 1st 2015 @ 12:28pm
        RBBAnonymous said | August 1st 2015 @ 12:28pm | ! Report

        The gap is narrowing which is what we want. I think that a lot of our domestic players are a little undervalued to be fair. We still have this mentality that if you haven’t tried Europe you are either afraid or not that good. We have enough good coaches in the league to be able to start developing a decent player especially with regards to the level of salary. Plenty of bang for the buck.

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