What's new
The Front Row Forums

Register a free account today to become a member of the world's largest Rugby League discussion forum! Once signed in, you'll be able to participate on this site by adding your own topics and posts, as well as connect with other members through your own private inbox!

Foreign quotas illegal - effects on ESL?

salivor

First Grade
Messages
9,804
A European court has ruled that quotas on foreign players in sport is illegal. The article below talks about Union and Cricket but obviously this will also have an effect on the ESL. Is it realistic to think that if there are no quotas in British League we will see an influx of Australian and New Zealand players? I don't know if the money exists to buy up majorly on foreign talent but I'd hate to see this court ruling being exploited by ESL clubs.

EU says foreign quotas are illegal

Paul Rees and Paul Kelso
Tuesday August 5, 2003
The Guardian

The development of young British rugby players and cricketers could be hampered by a European court ruling that may prove as influential on the two sports as the Bosman ruling was in football.

Legal experts and leading figures in rugby warned yesterday that a European Court of Justice ruling has the potential to destroy the quota system on foreign players that has been operating in both sports and could open the door for an unlimited number of players from countries such as South Africa and the South Sea islands to come into the games.

The case in question concerns Maros Kolpak, a Slovakian handball player whose name could become as infamous as that of the Belgian footballer now synonymous with the free transfer.

Last year Kolpak, a goalkeeper with German second division team TSV Ostringen, took the German handball federation to court to protest at a quota preventing more than two non-EU nationals playing for any team.

In May the ECJ found in his favour, ruling that the quota amounted to discrimination in employment law and that the system should not apply to nationals of countries that have an association or co-operation agreement with the EU who are legally employed within the EU.

More than 100 countries have such agreements, including South Africa and the South Sea islands, which have strong rugby heritages. The case establishes a precedent that players, once granted a work permit, will be able to play in this country without restriction.

Yesterday Howard Thomas, chief executive of Premier Rugby, warned that the ruling would have dire consequences for the development of home-grown talent if it forces the end of the quota system that allows only one non-EU player in domestic matches and two in European games.

"The decision of the Rugby Football Union to continue automatic promotion and relegation for another six years means that sides will be tempted to put short-term success before long-term planning," Thomas said.

"We warned the RFU of the dangers of continuing with one up, one down. We have seen in the last two seasons that clubs who are near the bottom of the table around Christmas time react by bringing in players from abroad and it is going to be easier to do that because of this ruling. We have told our clubs what the ruling means and it is up to them how they react to it."

Despite Thomas's warning the RFU said it did not expect a rush of foreign imports to hamper British player development.

"We do not believe this case will lead to an avalanche of foreign players into the Premiership and we believe there will be continued investment in club academies," said a spokesman. Players from the South Sea islands and South Africa will no longer be regarded as foreigners and will have the same rights as EU workers but they will still need to obtain a work permit."

A leading club official said that the ruling could prevent England producing a team capable of winning the World Cup. "England may win the World Cup this year but they will be hard pressed to do so in 2007," he said. "I think this ruling will lead to more and more foreign players coming into our league at the expense of home-grown talent."

Domestic cricket operates a quota that limits overseas players to two in any match, and four in a squad, but in contrast to rugby the implications of the ruling appear not to have reached the highest level.

Mark Roper-Drimie, director of legal affairs at the England and Wales Cricket Board, said he was unaware of the case and declined to comment. South Africans who qualify as EU nationals because of their parents' passports have already caused some controversy in the game, and disquiet is likely to increase if the ruling prompts more players to try their hand in county cricket. Football does not operate a quota system so is largely unaffected by the ruling.

Non-EU nationals require a work permit to play in Britain and should have played in 75% of their country's internationals over the previous two years to qualify. Premier League clubs approached the Home Office about introducing a quota system that would scrap the 75% rule in exchange for limiting the number of foreign players at any club to three. They had hoped the change would allow English clubs to bid for promising young foreign players, rather than limiting them to established international stars, but they were swiftly rebuffed.

http://sport.guardian.co.uk/news/story/0,10488,1012308,00.html
 

GBT

Juniors
Messages
339
Typical of the Granudia to leave League out of the topic. :roll:

Players may no longer be seen as foreigners, but they will still have to meet EU requirements to recieve a work permit.

I'm not sure if this will lead to an influx. One solution could be to limit the number of none EU born players per match, or set a minimum of perhaps 12 British players in the squad of 17 - surely that wouldn't be illegal, would it?
 
Messages
2,807
I believe the European basketball leagues have long had a limit of 2 foreigners, usually Americans, per team. I wonder if this ruling will open that up as well?
 

terracesider

Juniors
Messages
883
The simple, but nonetheless worrying, answer is that the percise implications are unclear. Will it apply, as the report seems to indicate, only to individuals who have already been granted a work permit; or will the principle be extended to give a right of employment to any applicant from these countries? This is one to watch.

GBT said:
One solution could be to limit the number of none EU born players per match, or set a minimum of perhaps 12 British players in the squad of 17 - surely that wouldn't be illegal, would it?

Afraid so. If any person has an EU passport they are regarded as part of the EU domestic labour market, that is, they are entitled to work without restriction in any EU country. (The few exceptions concern the professions, mainly medecine, and they are being negotiatied away by the EU and the member states' governments.) So any limitations on EU passport holders, such as a squad quota for British born players, would certainly be illegal.
 

bender

Juniors
Messages
2,231
I think the effect of the overseas contingent on the standard of the british team is grossly overstated. In fact, I think it could be a good thing for the game. The problem is not the fact that average aussies play in Britain it is that old and average Aussies (who are out of form) are selected ahead of young players. That is the fault of the British coach, not the number of average players available. If the coaches do their job properly, it only helps raise the standard of the British competition which is the only way to ensure that the Brits can still compete with the aussies. If the standard of the NRL dropped, there is no doubt that the Kangaroos would be far less competitive.

Instead of worrying about import quotas, i think Britain would be better off establishing sister relationships with Aussie clubs and perhaps lobbying the NRL to force each club to take on say 3 British youngsters for their lower division teams. This would help the British youngsters get exposure to a good level of playing and more importantly help them learn the attitude needed to succeed at NRL level. I am sure you would find that once these players started to return, they would do so as far better players and would force their way into the side ahead of any number of average Aussie imports.
 

terracesider

Juniors
Messages
883
bender said:
I think the effect of the overseas contingent on the standard of the british team is grossly overstated. In fact, I think it could be a good thing for the game. The problem is not the fact that average aussies play in Britain it is that old and average Aussies (who are out of form) are selected ahead of young players.

I agree, Bender, that it is much overstated. In part you are right about the average, and below average, Aussies who are blocking opportunities for young British talent, but I don't think it's so much of problem in SL where the recently introduced Under-18 and Under-21 Academies are already producing teenagers who are forcing their way into first teams.

Rather, to me, the real problem seems to be at the lower levels - National Leagues 1 and 2 - where if the regulations say a club can sign x overseas players, they sign x overseas players irrespective of quality. Frankly, some of them are worse than third rate and that is closing off opportunities for young players to come through the amateur clubs, a traditional route

That is the fault of the British coach, not the number of average players available. If the coaches do their job properly, it only helps raise the standard of the British competition which is the only way to ensure that the Brits can still compete with the aussies. If the standard of the NRL dropped, there is no doubt that the Kangaroos would be far less competitive.

Yes, partly the coaches, but there is a powerful clique of chairmen who continue to put club before country, as in the UK Origin fiasco. These people will not take a long-term view, all that matters is this season's results. Until their wings are clipped there is only so much the coaches can do.

Instead of worrying about import quotas, i think Britain would be better off establishing sister relationships with Aussie clubs and perhaps lobbying the NRL to force each club to take on say 3 British youngsters for their lower division teams. This would help the British youngsters get exposure to a good level of playing and more importantly help them learn the attitude needed to succeed at NRL level. I am sure you would find that once these players started to return, they would do so as far better players and would force their way into the side ahead of any number of average Aussie imports.

Here we disagree. Sounds to me like over-confidence. We've got the young players in SL already, they just aren't being given the chance to develop further because of the lack of representative football. Partly because, as I've already alluded to, some stupid chairmen vetoed a three match origin and partly because the ultra-defensive national coach will not pick them, preferring instead the tried and tested failures who we know from experience the Aussies can beat. That's why - and many others over here - fear this autumn's test series will be a 3-0 shambles.
 

alexisUK

Juniors
Messages
37
Still is a quota, but 'Kolpak' players are exempt, for example south sea islanders. The quota stands at three. There are good young british players coming through at stable, well off clubs. It is the smaller clubs, desperate to stave off relegation, for example, that pick 3rd rate Aussies ahead of British talent. Getting rid of relegation would trash the crediblity of the comp in the british psyche, so we can't get rid of it, but at the same time, it leaves clubs in a precarious position and unable to bring through talent.
 

Evil Homer

Moderator
Staff member
Messages
7,178
It turned out that Australia weren't in the said group,so the quota remains.South Sea Islanders are now known by most as Kolpak players. :D
 
Top