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Reading benefit from Arsenal academy, but Coppell wants foreign cap

Reading boss Steve Coppell admits they've benefitted from Arsenal's outstanding academy system, but still wants limits on foreign players.

Reading boast an influential former Arsenal trainee in the shape of midfielder James Harper and another ex-Gunner who never made a breakthrough there, Steve Sidwell, was a key performer for the Royals until he left for Chelsea in the summer.

Many other sides have snapped up Arsene Wenger rejects and Coppell remains convinced the fact that so many English players have been discarded without being given a chance is proof that the system is flawed.

He said: "It's a cottage industry.

"The ones that aren't good enough to get in their first team are very profitable by-products and are sold on.

"It has been of benefit of us but I always have one eye on the English national team and I think there should be a number of English players in every squad, every Saturday - we are in the English Premier League after all.

"You would have to start with a really low number. It is sad to see but one is a fairly regular number of English players in teams. It is not just Arsenal but a number of the big teams.

"All these clubs are spending an awful lot of money on academies and an academy structure has been in place for a long time, and yet the big sides are not bringing many English sides through the system to play in their own first teams.

"It is inevitable that this is going to affect the England team over a number of years."

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Tribal Football Staff

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