Progressing through the ranks as a junior to become an established first-team regular continues to be rarer in the modern day era of football where big money spending sprees is king. Even the most talented youth prospects are made to wait patiently in the reserves, particularly in England where the number of national players in the Premier League have reached an all-time low. It has created growing concerns that clubs ultimately neglect their youth academies in favour of dipping into an over-inflated transfer market and splashing huge sums of money on marquee signings that could make an impact. While it could make a difference towards enjoying success or avoiding failure, the introduction of Financial Fair Play could be the much-needed breakthrough for youth academies to finally show the fruits of their labour and see more young players make the breakthrough for the greater good of football on the whole.
Less spending, more youth emphasis
With over £800 million spent across the English Premier League during the summer transfer window and James Rodriguez’s blockbuster move to Real Madrid for £63 million, football seemingly has no boundaries as to the amount of money that can be spent on transfers. There is an argument that it makes watching football matches across elite European domestic leagues more enthralling and exciting for fans that get to see the very best players perform on the pitch. Major transfers always have an impact on odds across http://www.bookies.com, as illustrated through the arrival of Cesc Fabregas and Diego Costa which made Chelsea favourites to win the English Premier League in the eyes of bookmakers. However, with Financial Fair Play rules now restricting clubs to the level of expenditure they can accrue in accordance with avoiding going over the annual loss limit of £39.5 million from 2014 until 2017, it may force managers to consider looking towards their youth academy as a means of saving money. This particularly applies to elite clubs who have been criticised for failing to place more emphasis on bringing through home-grown players that could also benefit the national team in the long run, but there is every chance that more academy graduates will begin to make the breakthrough into the first-team picture.
Better all-round structure
Germany are arguably the only country with the perfect football-based structure that provides considerable funding for every team to focus on bringing through the most technically gifted and talented players possible. This change in emphasis came after a very disappointing Euro 2000 campaign which provided a stark realisation that their golden generation was reaching the end of the road and action was required to ensure a continuous conveyor belt of talent emerged from all areas of Germany. These changes have not only ensured that the quality of German football in the Bundesliga and below remains at the highest level, but also provides the national team with considerable quality at all levels; their 2014 World Cup triumph in Brazil is a blueprint for how other nations can place considerable emphasis and finance on their youth structure and reap the rewards. Being part of a system in which youth is given a chance to shine undoubtedly provides a wonderful incentive for young players to train hard, develop their game and make their mark when given a chance in the first team. The introduction of FFP could influence more clubs to utilise money that would have previously gone towards marquee signings towards integrating a beneficial structure, utilising their wonderful state-of-the-art training facilities, to bring through home-grown players on a regular basis that not only have the quality to be a first-team regular for many years, but also improve their country’s chances of glory.