Squawka Analysis

The players who would’ve never graced the Premier League if Brexit had come earlier

The players who would’ve never graced the Premier League if Brexit had come earlier

Great Britain’s vote to leave the European Union will have widespread ramifications across every aspect of life, including football.

The Premier League had 432 European players registered for the most recent season, with the league attracting the best players from across the continent.

However, Britain’s decision in the referendum to leave the EU could change things dramatically, with restrictions on work permits for European players set to become much stricter.

New rules from the home office could mean that Europeans from a top-10 ranked nation will have to have played in 30% of their country’s international games in the two years prior to asking for a work permit.

The stipulations would be even more stringent for players from lower-ranked countries with only those who are stalwarts for their country eligible to join the Premier League.

Players who had not played regularly enough, or at all for their nation of birth, would not be granted a work permit to play in Britain, while those under the age of 18 also affected.

Article 19 of the FIFA Regulations prevents the transfers of players aged between 16 and 18 in the EU and European Economic Area.

“The best young players are frequently scouted from around the EU and there are good numbers of EU players under 18 years of age at academies here,” Andrew Osborne, a partner specialising in immigration at Lewis Silkin LLP, a London-based law firm, told Squawka in April.

“In the event that Britain leaves the EU, young players will not be able to move from the EU to English clubs under the age of 18 years and so clubs here will not have access to a significant pool of talent.”

So, had Britain left the European Union earlier, how many notable players might never have graced the Premier League?

Manchester United

Gerard Pique

Cristiano Ronaldo, 18 – Sporting Lisbon (2003) – £13m

Gerard Pique, 17 – Barcelona (2004) – £3.9m

Patrice Evra, 25 – Monaco (2005) – £6m

Paul Pogba, 16 – Le Havre (2009) – N/A

Bebe, 19 – Vitória (2010) – £6.3m

David de Gea, 20 – Atletico Madrid (2011) – £18.75m

Ander Herrera, 24 – Atletic Bilbao (2014) – £27m

Anthony Martial, 19 – Monaco (2015) – £37.5m

Arsenal

Patrick Vieira

Patrick Vieira, 20 – AC Milan (1996) – £3.5m

Nicolas Anelka, 18 – Paris Saint-Germain (1997) – £570,000

Cesc Fabregas, 16 – Barcelona (2003)  – £2.4m

Robin van Persie, 20 – Feyenoord (2004) – £3.38m

Bacary Sagna, 26 – Auxerre (2007) – £6.75m

Laurent Koscielny, 24  – Lorient (2010) – £9.38m

Olivier Giroud, 25 – Montpellier (2012) – £9m

Hector Bellerin, 18 – Barcelona (2013) – £375,000

Chelsea

William Gallas

William Gallas, 23 – Marseille (2001) – £6.98m

Tomas Kalas, 17 – Sigma Olomouc (2010) – £4.5m

Romelu Lukaku, 18 – Anderlecht (2011) – £16.5m

Juan Mata, 23 – Valencia (2011) – £20m

Cesar Azpilicueta, 22 – Marseille (2012) – £6.6m

Kurt Zouma, 19 – Saint-Etienne (2014) – £10.95m

Liverpool

Luis Garcia

Luis Garcia, 26 – Barcelona (2004) – £6.56m

Florent Sinama Pongole, 16 – La Havre (2001) – £300,000

Fabio Borini, 21 – Roma (2012) – £9.98m

Emre Can, 20 – Bayer Leverkusem (2014) – £9m

Tottenham Hotspur

Pedro Mendes

Noe Pamarot, 25 – Nice (2004) – £1.8m

Pedro Mendes, 25 – Porto (2004) – £2.25m

Younes Kaboul, 21 – Auxerre (2007) – £9m

Etienne Capoue, 24 – Toulouse (2013) – £8.25m

Roberto Soldado, 28 – Valencia (2013) – £22.5m

Benjamin Strambouli, 23 – Montpellier (2014) – £4.43m

Manchester City

Jerome Boateng Man City

Rolando Bianchi, 24 – Reggina (2007) – £9.75m

Gelson Fernandes, 20 – FC Sion (2007) – £4.13m

Jerome Boateng, 20 – Hamburg (2009) – £9.38m

Javi Garcia, 25 – Benfica (2012) – £15.15m

Others

Dimitri Payet, 28 – Marseille (2015) – £10.7m

N’Golo Kante, 24 – Caen (2015) – £5.6m

Sports immigration lawyer Maria Patsalos told Sky Sports of the impact of Brexit: “There could be a catastrophic effect. We don’t know for sure.”

More than 100 current Premier League players would have failed to gain a work permit. The top flight may yet have to adapt its transfer strategy.

Ander Herrera

Anthony Martial

Bebe

Cesar Azpilicueta

Cesc Fabregas

David De Gea

Dimitri Payet

Emre Can

Fabio Borini

Gerard Pique

Juan Mata

Kurt Zouma

n'golo kante

Patrice Evra

Paul Pogba

William Gallas

Arsenal

Chelsea

English Premier League

Leicester City

Liverpool

Manchester City

Manchester United