Homegrown rules explained and why further Liverpool transfers are restricted - Liverpool Echo

Homegrown rules explained and why further Liverpool transfers are restricted – Liverpool Echo

Having already signed Alexis Mac Allister this summer, Liverpool would in a dream world want to sign two more midfielders and a left-wing centre-back.

However, with the World Cup winner arriving within two weeks of the Premier League season ending for a fee of around £35 million, there is no sign of the Reds’ second signing this summer for now.

That doesn’t mean Liverpool have fallen asleep behind the wheel, far from it. Patience was always required with some of their selected players currently competing in the European Under-21 Championships in Romania and Georgia.

Meanwhile, with the Reds not returning for pre-season until July 8, they have three weeks to go until their first pre-season friendly and more than six weeks to their Premier League opener away at Chelsea. In other words, there is plenty of time to wrap things up, with Bournemouth, Brentford, Brighton, Burnley and Chelsea being the only other top English clubs to have spent significant sums on senior deals that involve not just signing a loaned player who permanently supports such fact.

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As a result, Mac Allister remains a rare major signing in the Premier League after the summer domestic transfer window officially opens on June 14. For the record, the international market will not open until July 1.

With Academy graduate Leighton Clarkson still the only permanent outgoing at Anfield, it’s set to be a busy few months on the transfer front for Liverpool, with this summer arguably their busiest since the close season ahead of their 2018/19 Champions League win. winning campaign.

However, there are limits to what the Reds can do, as evidenced by their decision to pull out of the race in April to sign long-standing target Jude Bellingham.

“The way this club is run is not to throw money around and see if it works or not.” Jürgen Klopp warned in February. “Our transfers always have to be right. So that makes it really difficult if we can’t make four transfers before we know who is going to leave the club.”

As a result, Liverpool are reeling as they continue to weigh their options, with Premier League and UEFA rules also limiting their inbound activity as they look for a squad of 25 seniors. So with a summer signing through the door, what does the Reds team currently look like heading into 2023/24?

Lacking enough homegrown players, Liverpool were unable to put together a full 25-man squad last season. With James Milner and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain leaving at the end of their contracts, that remains a concern.

But as things stand, Liverpool currently have 25 senior players to register next season as a number of youngsters are no longer classed as ‘Under-21s’ players. But while Curtis Jones will be used to bolster such quotas, it would be a surprise if Rhys Williams, who is likely to leave on loan with Aberdeen leading the charge, Paul Glatzel, who is out of contract but has been offered a new deal, either Sepp van den Berg or Vitezslav Jaros, who have also been tipped to leave, were selected next season.

Feeling ruthless and removing the aforementioned quartet permanently or on loan will leave Liverpool with 21 senior players. Of such a total, six would be homegrown, although Nat Phillips and Caomhin Kelleher could also leave.

Admittedly, Klopp has insisted that there is a ‘extraordinary offerfor the Reds to even consider cashing in on Kelleher this summer. As a result, if we take the German face to face with regard to the Irishman, but assume that Phillips will be sold, Liverpool would have five homegrown players and would need to sign a further three if they were to name a full 25-man squad, with the club may select no more than 17 non-native players.

When it comes to foreign players, the arrival of Mac Allister takes the Reds’ quota to 15 of the maximum allowed of 17. However, out-of-contract Adrian, who Klopp revealed he expects to write new terms and sign a new deal received is on such a list.

This currently leaves Liverpool with room for two more overseas signings, although seniors would create more room for newcomers.

While Liverpool’s Premier League squad is pretty straightforward as a result, things are a bit more complicated when it comes to European competition. This is due to UEFA rules regarding the need for club-trained players, whereby clubs are not allowed more than four association-trained players within their eight ‘local’ list A nominees, as well as which Reds players under 21 years actually eligible to be enrolled on ‘List B’

If Kelleher stays in (or any of Williams, Glatzel and Jaros for that matter), then Liverpool can boast the required four club-trained players, with Joe Gomez, Trent Alexander-Arnold and Jones in the other three required places. But without that fourth qualifying player, the Reds will be limited to naming a squad of up to 24 men in the Europa League this season.

Meanwhile, Klopp currently has four league-trained players in his squad, courtesy of captain Jordan Henderson, Phillips, Van den Berg and Fabio Carvalho. Despite still being 20, the former Fulham player, who is expected to leave on loan this summer, is ineligible to be registered as an under-21 ‘List B’ player as he has less than two seasons on Anfield has played.

If we assume that Phillips, Van den Berg and Carvalho all leave this summer, Liverpool will again have room for three homegrown signings. However, with clubs allowing more than four club-trained players, any of the aforementioned remaining Academy graduates could occupy such berths if they are still on the books.

While the arrival of Mac Allister leaves the Reds with 15 foreign players for action in the Premier League, that total currently stands at 16 for Europe. This is because Ben Doak, who only joined the club last summer, is not eligible for a ‘List B’ place despite being under 21 years old. As a result, he could not qualify for Europa League action next season. depending on the rest of Liverpool’s summer activities.

There is room for the youngster to sign up as things stand, but such places could be filled by seniors by the time the transfer window closes on September 1 if the Reds manage to sign two more midfielders and a left winger. Chase. center back.

Of course, even if the Reds aren’t able to name a full 25-man squad after completing their summer transfers, they won’t be short. Players like Harvey Elliott, Stefan Bajcetic, Bobby Clark, Kaide Gordon, Tyler Morton and Conor Bradley all qualify as under-21 players and will be named on ‘List B’ for Europa League action if they make Klopp’s first team held.

But assuming the majority of Liverpool’s senior team remains in place, with Carvalho, Phillips, Williams and Van den Berg the only players to leave along with younger fringe players, the Reds still have five places to fill to secure a maximum of 25 men. team. If they want to select Doak in Europe, that number drops to four.

Having withdrawn interest in Bellingham and missing out on Mason Mount, it remains to be seen whether Liverpool will pursue any more homegrown talent this summer.

If they do, they will have enough leeway to strengthen accordingly in midfield, centre-back and any other position they choose, with a maximum of five places (including three homegrown slots) currently vacant in their squad . But if they don’t, after Mac Allister they will only have room for up to two new entrants, over the age of 21, with no additional senior exits.

Admittedly rumored Ryan Gravenberch, Gabri Veiga and Romeo Lavia will not need to be registered for Premier League action if signed as they are classed as under-21 players. But there should still be room for them in Europe, in line with the same rules that could deprive Doak of opportunity, so it’s hardly a loophole for them to take advantage of.

If we take Klopp literally, he was not wrong when he said that Liverpool “cannot make four transfers before we know who will leave the club.” And that’s before we even consider the darkest depths of the Reds’ financial side, having picked up the World Cup winner at a discounted price that seems even more of a bargain when placed alongside Bellingham and Mount.

Mac Allister is the first player at Anfield this summer, but Liverpool still have a lot to do before Klopp’s 2023-24 squad is complete.

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