England coach Roy Hodgson is concerned seeing the country's best young players "stockpiled" at the Premier League’s biggest clubs.
Luke Shaw continues to be linked with a transfer to Manchester United, while his Southampton team-mate Adam Lallana is keen on joining Liverpool, who have made a £25million bid, and Everton’s Ross Barkley has attracted attention from a number of leading teams.
Hodgson said: “I would lie to you if I said I didn’t say that was a concern. Whenever players are at a club like Southampton, even if they are young like Shaw, [James] Ward-Prowse, Callum Chambers — guys like this under normal circumstances, let alone the Lallanas and the [Jay] Rodriguezs — they might find it hard.
“Even if they were playing at a top, top club, there would be more foreign competitors and bigger-named players around them. But I believe if Liverpool are trying to sign some of the Southampton players, paying the sort of money that is being mentioned that these players are now worth, I would presume they are signing them to play and not stockpile them.
“You are always going to face the problem, with the younger players, that many of them, if they are good, gravitate to the top clubs and it’s much harder to break into the team in a top six or seven club — you are going to be facing an awful lot of competition.
“Our academies are very good but sometimes we reach a cul de sac with players. At 17, 18 or 19, are they going to get the chance? If they don’t get the chance, are they going to stagnate?”
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