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Thursday 12 September 2013

Premier League clubs back youth development debate

Clubs affirm commitment to engage in co-operative manner with process outlined by Greg Dyke

The Barclays Under-21 Premier League is part of the Elite Player Performance Plan

The Premier League clubs today met and affirmed their commitment to engaging in a collaborative and cooperative manner with the debate and process outlined by The FA Chairman in his recent speech.

The Premier League clubs, Board and Executive will all contribute their expertise, knowledge and understanding of the issues and challenges in regard to producing England qualified talent who are of the requisite quality to play both at Premier League and international level.

The structure of this engagement will be defined between the Premier League and The FA as more detail about the process envisaged by The FA Chairman is established.

Premier League Chairman, Anthony Fry, said: "It is evident from discussions with the clubs that there is a strong desire to see greater numbers of England qualified players coming through their Academy systems that are capable of performing at both Premier League and international standard.

"The investment that has already gone into the new Youth Development system through the structuring and implementation of the Elite Player Performance Plan demonstrates this. We are grateful to The FA for their support for this quality-based approach, as well as their undertaking to drive standards of coaching and coach education forward. In both areas a lot has been achieved and there remains plenty to be done.

"There is no doubt around the Premier League table as to the benefits of a national set-up that is thriving and performing well. That is why the Premier League clubs, Board and Executive all signed up to contributing to the process of debate initiated by Greg and helping to identify any appropriate outcomes that will serve to improve standards and delivery in respect of player development."

The FA Chairman, Greg Dyke, said: "The intention of my speech regarding the development and progression of English players was to discover why there are fewer and fewer English players at the top level, and the point of any debate is to find solutions.

"I am very keen that the Commission work with everyone in football and particularly the Premier League, both as an organisation and its individual member clubs. Clearly they have a lot to contribute to the process.

"We already know there is a lot of good work going on but I suspect there is more to be done. The FA’s investment in and commitment to coaching is exemplified by St George’s Park. The Premier League’s focus on Youth Development through the Elite Player Performance Plan promises much.

"I am pleased that the Premier League clubs, Board and Executive all want to contribute to the Commission I am setting up. There is a great deal of knowledge there and I am sure we will be able to find some very concrete ways of improving the pool of talent available to England managers."

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