Football: Salary cap for youngsters would help England - Campbell

Football: Salary cap for youngsters would help England - Campbell
(From L-R) Former England footballer Sol Campbell, former England football team manager Terry Venables, former England footballer Steve McManaman and former England footballer Alan Shearer (R) pose for photographers during the "FA 150" event in central London on January 16, 2013 marking the 150th anniversary of the founding of the Football Association. The event saw figures from all areas of English football joined by international football stars to celebrate the anniversary.

LONDON - Former England international defender Sol Campbell says English football would benefit from a salary cap for youth players which would make academies less attractive for overseas talent.

Campbell, 39, who made 73 appearances for England during a 20-year playing career, said too many foreign youngsters in English academies were hampering the development of local players.

In an interview with Reuters ahead of the publication of his autobiography "Sol Searching" next year, the former Tottenham, Arsenal and Portsmouth centre-back, said: "You cannot stop overseas players playing in the Premier League.

"But I think there should be a salary cap for younger, youth team players.

"Youth team players from overseas are coming into the academies and earning too much money too young and English youngsters are suffering.

"Their salaries should be capped until there are 18 or 19 or they get to the first team.

"It would make coming to England less attractive for foreign youngsters and give some of the English players time to learn their trade. They would not be under such severe pressure and it would allow them time to grow.

"It would mean we could get them up to the standard to play at the highest level. It would give them time and space to develop.

"Everyone else, the Germans, for example, have time and space. In Germany, there may be a couple of Swiss guys, or Austrian. You are not going to have 60 or 70 per cent non-German youngsters at youth team level.

"In Spain, you might have a couple of Portuguese or South Americans but you are not going to have 60 or 70 per cent of players from around the world in youth teams in Spain."

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