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Dein and the G14 threaten FIFA with legal action

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Dein issues G14 warning to Fifa

Fifa must drop a proposal to limit the number of foreign players fielded by European clubs or face legal action, says Arsenal vice-chairman David Dein.

Fifa boss Sepp Blatter has proposed that European clubs must field a minimum of six home players.

But Dein, chairman of the G14 group of top clubs, said: "This is totally illegal and it will be challenged.

"If Fifa want to light a fire then so be it, but it will be a very hot one. I hope this idea doesn't go any further."

G14, which represents 18 of Europe's richest clubs, is at odds with the world governing body over a number of issues.

It is also involved in two court cases related to the release of international players and compensation should they get injured.

Dein said: "I appeal to FIFA for a period of calm. We are currently on the road to resolving a lot of the problems in the game, so there is no need to cause any more headaches."

Blatter believes his rule would protect the game at national level and bring clubs closer to the fans.

However, many within the sport, including European football's governing body Uefa, think the proposal is a breach of European law and rules of a free labour market in the European Union

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I know, hire Gary Betman for FIFA president. He don't say much or get in the news much.

Maybe bigger nets and obstruction penalty shots for infractions from the mid-field line in the defensive zone would help sell soccer [}:)]

Does Blatter talk too much?

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Guest Jeffery S.

Why doesn't Blatter also propose that teams should have a minimum number of players from the region the club is in? Or the very city?Or from the youth teams? That would make more sense, as fans may warm up to a player from the other side of the country but may be closer to one who is home grown. As does happen.

Just trying to suggest that if you take his logic to its ultimate consequences you would end up with an absurd situation, with rules that could not be enforced in any free labour market.

The fact that the Bosman rule applies in Europe is what makes the stronger leagues more competitive. And could in fact be a positive factor for weaker clubs, if they are smart hiring. I know in Spain, that even though the big clubs mostly dominate, the fact that the medium-sized ones can hire freely in Europe has strengthened them. There are no easy games anymore, where before most of the games were easy for the stronger sides. Bosman in part is what helped Alavés make the UEFA Cup final, what has made Villareal or Deportivo strong as well.

So it is a lost cause. In the end fans are smart enough, or should be, to require a few home-grown boys on the side, and it is what makes a team like Liverpool or Barça or Bayern attractive to the fans, as they have guys who have come through the youth program alongside great interenationals. If fans at clubs with fewer home-grown players don't care about their identity, and only are concerned with results, that is fine, and it could be to their credit that their are not xenophobic in fact. But there is no question that the most attractive option is when a club respects its local identity and does care about fielding players who are symbols of their more local or regional identities.

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