The England manager, Roy Hodgson, said yesterday that the new £1bn annual Premier League television rights deal will make it even harder for English players to command first-team places, to the detriment of the national side.
During the course of a discussion in which he argued that it was impossible to replicate the summer success of Team GB at the Olympics as a whole, Hodgson said that the financial rewards of survival in the top flight meant he and his assistants might have to do an increasing amount of their scouting in the new Reserve League.
"You could say the league is already wealthy and now that's going to double," Hodgson told a breakfast event for Club Wembley members at the English game's national stadium. "You are going to get £70m, going up to £100m if you are [a] successful [team]. You won't have many English players who are going to get [a chance]. With Team GB we are talking about athletes who are born and bred in their own country and there are no complications with regard to any foreigners taking their place."
Hodgson said he held out hopes of the Premier League considering a quota of a third of players being non-English. A quota system is unenforceable in European law and there is no intention to attempt to introduce one, with the Premier League instead seeking to use its Elite Player Performance Plan (EPPP), youth development plan and the new Under-21 league to drive up standards and equip the national side with the players it needs.
Hodgson has also asked the Premier League for more understanding when it comes to fixture scheduling. "It would be nice if, when we're playing on Friday, the top teams played on Saturday and not Sunday," he said. "Then on Monday we could do a bit of work and on Tuesday do some serious work.
"But every time the top clubs have played on Sunday and some at five o'clock on Sunday. If they're from Manchester and they've played in Southampton, they get back late at night then have to come down again."
The England manager also called for the introduction of a winter break to give the English season a more "logical" schedule. He said: "It would be lovely to think that one day we could all get together and say, 'England is important'.
"You hear people trying to say it's only the Premier League that counts and the Champions League, and people don't care about international football, but something like 24 or 25 million people watched our [Euro 2012 quarter-final] game against Italy."Reuse content