The Only Thing That Doesn’t Change Is Unchanging Discussion: Foreign Players Rule

“Tell me a club where I can choose 3 players”

This week, I have decided to start with a sentence which Turkey National Team Manager Mircea Lucescu said in a press conference. He criticised the foreign players rule in Spor Toto Super League. According to him, the rule prevents the development of Turkish players. Every club prefers to transfer foreign players in the squads because foreign players are cheaper and it is easier to transfer rather than growing young players. When this is the case, it is difficult to choose Turkish players for the national team for him.

Life Is Not Football But Football Is Life

The International break caused me to think about something. Life is not football, but football has to adapt to life. During the cold war, Eastern Bloc seemed like a bugaboo for Western Bloc or the exact opposite situation. Obscurity or darkness frighten us out of our mind because we don’t know what we can encounter with. This sharp border caused us to be a stranger to innovations, inventions, or new ideas from the other bloc. For example, the most of the people know Johan Cruyff, but a clear majority don’t know the Russian manager Victor Maslov who invented 4-4-2.

However, I don’t want to use the term “Globalisation”, but the status quo has made football united which means the same tactical philosophies, players from different countries etc. and we can watch every national football league on stream. Countries producing new ideas alongside some of the common ideas become more successful. On the other hand, countries importing the ideas exert every effort. For instance, if you watch the Turkish League, the most of the teams would probably choose 4-2-3-1 formation, the same player roles, and the teams have more foreign players than homegrown players. If you watch any European league, it is highly possible to see popular 4-2-3-1 formation and the same tactical plans and player roles. (4-2-3-1 is an example. we can say 4-4-2 etc. Lots of things are same except little differences.)

As a result, different tactical thinking can be noticed instantly thanks to the global world. Information society can use the new.

Is Globalisation Always Good?

As you can understand what I told above, I believe that countries opening to the world and producing new ideas will develop more. This is because every country has something different than each other in terms of player development methods, geography, genotype, traditions (despite globalisation and popular culture.), and rural-urban lifestyle. Unfortunately, globalisation has been killing “Local”, and even worse a “local” can swallow other “locals” and it transforms into “global” such as Total Football. In every football league, total football’s particles can be seen. Or Brazil moved away from their own style. There are no Ronaldo, Ronaldinho, Rivaldo, Romario, Pele, Zico now. Only Neymar has that kind of creativity.

Foreign Players Rule

Now, in Turkey, a team can play 11 foreign players in the starting eleven. Does the rule really prevent the development of Turkish players? For sure, Turkey must improve the youth setup, but there is no need to restrict foreign players. Turkish young players can move abroad. They can get Total Football training in the Netherland, Cattenacio training in Italy or it can be great to play at the Rio De Janerio’s beaches for them in terms of their technical skills. If Turkey does what is necessary for the information society, they can’t see the wood for the trees.


“I can tell lots of countries where we can choose lots of Turkish players for the national team.” 

When we say this sentence, it means we’re on the right track.

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