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WORK PERMIT SHAMBLES (P2): Six of the Best - the millions UK economy loses with every ignorant ruling

The FA and the Home Office, by making it even more difficult for non-Europeans to gain a UK work permit, are only going to hurt the British economy.

All it will mean is Premier League clubs, forced to pass on young, non-European talent, having to shell out even greater sums to foreign rivals to bring the same players to England at an older age.

Here's just four deals, before the new rules are introduced from May 1, that have cost the British economy millions thanks to the laws and ignorance of those sitting on these panels:


The Ghana legend actually trialled and earned a contract offer from Manchester United as a 17 year-old, only to be blocked from moving to England by a UK work permit hearing. Essien would eventually move to France, playing first for Bastia before joining Olympique Lyon. He signed for Chelsea in 2005 for £24.4 million.

COST - £25 million


Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger recently admitted he identified Di Maria playing for Rosario Central and was convinced he'd seen something special. But the Frenchman also knew the UK's work permit laws would mean any move for the then teen would be a waste of time. Di Maria left Argentina for Benfica in a deal for little over £4 million. After four years with Real Madrid, the winger signed for Manchester United in a British record transfer deal of £59.7 million.

COST - £25m + £60m = £85m


While playing for Independiente in Argentina, Aguero was recommended to then Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson by high-profile agent Barry McIntosh. Ferguson sent his brother, Martin, the club's former chief scout, to make a personal check on El Kun. A deal could've been done for a little over £2 million - if not for work permit restrictions. Aguero would eventually be sold to Atletico Madrid before moving onto Manchester City almost four years ago for £38 million.

COST - £25m + £60m + £38m = £123m


In January 2012, having just completed his second season with Internacional, Oscar appeared on his way to QPR for an agreed £5 million. It was a huge coup for the Rs, which had just been promoted to the Premier League that season. But a work permit hearing refused Oscar's application. Six months later, Chelsea came knocking and signed the Brazilian for £20 million. The work permit hearing, this time, was a formality.

COST - £25m + £60m + £38m + £15m (20-5) = £138m



The Colombian was identified by Barry McIntosh playing for Banfield in Argentina in 2008. He was offered to Birmingham City, Tottenham and Celtic for a price of £2.5 million. Last year, for many, Rodriguez was the star of the World Cup. He left AS Monaco on the back of that form for Real Madrid to the tune of €80 million.


At 18 years of age, Douglas Costa was rated the best young player in South America and was offered terms by Manchester United in 2009. Sir Alex Ferguson wanted to initially take him on-loan due to work permit restrictions, a proposal which was rejected by Gremio. The midfielder eventually was sold to Shakhtar a year later for €6 million, where he has won 11 trophies, including five league titles. Now boasting caps with Brazil, Douglas Costa has spoken of hope of moving to Chelsea this summer.


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