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Reading boss Coppell supports foreign limits

Steve Coppell has backed the campaign to limit the number of foreigners in the Barclays Premier League.

Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson pointed an accusing finger at Arsene Wenger over a lack of English players in his Arsenal team, and the Gunners are likely to field an all-foreign starting XI in their next match - away to Coppell's Reading on Monday night.

Ex-England winger Coppell made it clear he would welcome legislation that forced Wenger to pick locals.

He said: "I just think long term it is a dangerous game.

"I admire so much the football they play, it is most pleasing on the eye, but you would hope that given the fact that he has been there 10 years he could create English players who could play that way.

"That would obviously enhance the national team."

Many sides have snapped up 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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