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Hearts ace Skacel lashes out at SPL's youth policy

Heart of Midlothian attacker Rudi Skacel believes young players in Scotland should be given more opportunity to develop in a senior team environment.

At present, three players under the age of 21 have to be in a Scottish Premier League team's match-day squad but Czech Republic's Skacel feels that perhaps it would be wiser to have these developing footballers play in the lower leagues so they can gain experience in first team surroundings.

"Scottish football must work with its young boys and give them opportunities in the second and third leagues below the SPL," Skacel told the Daily Record.

"This is the way to build and bring through new groups of boys and is also recognised as the best way forward in the Czech Republic.

"The SPL have this silly, silly rule there must be three players under the age of 21 in the first team squad on a matchday. Do you see this rule anywhere else in British football? I don't - it's bull***t.

"There are second and third leagues to build up boys and when they are good enough any manager would be happy to bring them into his first team.

"That is the way to bring through better players, not by making up stupid rules.

"If I was 15 years younger and was brought into a first-team squad, it would be no encouragement because I would know they had to introduce three under-21 players. I wouldn't need to be good enough, only under 21.

"This is a big mistake and it kills football. Everyone has problems with money these days but it's no way to develop young boys.

"You must work with them and you have two or three leagues for that.

"Everywhere else in Europe does it, it's easier. Good luck to you guys because I like Scottish football."

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