Houllier: Don't blame Premiership for England failure

Former Liverpool boss Gerard Houllier says England are wrong if they're blaming the amount of foreigners in the Premiership for their national team failure.

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"England simply can't use the amount of foreigners in the game as a reason for not qualifying for Euro 2008," said the Frenchman. "There were no foreigners in English football between 1966 and 1996 and what did they win in those 30 years?

"The country does produce great players like Michael Owen, Wayne Rooney and Steven Gerrard but the real problem is they do not produce sufficient players who are good enough to step in for injured internationals.

"When players like those three or Rio Ferdinand are unavailable, England are too weakened to compete at the highest levels."

But Houllier thinks there is a way out.

He said: "England must now provide themselves with a system of forming coaches and players at a level you expect from great nations.

"I can't really understand why the FA gave up on the coaching school at Lilleshall. That's where Michael Owen came from."

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