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Question Number: 31928

Other 10/23/2017

RE: Rec Adult

Bert Andrews of London, U.K. asks...

Is there a cap on how many signed players an EFL Championship (or any league) team can have available to play League games? And if a Reserve squad or youth team player who is under contract with the club first team, but was not named in the squad for this season (given a shirt number) play in a league game? (I know that they can play in cup games).
Thank you!

Answer provided by Referee Joe McHugh

Hi Bert
It is not a refereeing question so we are not competent to answer definitively. This is my opinion oooking at the League rules.
This is highly regulated and not at all straight forward. It may also be linked to Financial Fair play
I believe that there is a cap on the number of players that can be registered to a maximum of 24 yet non-first team registrations can be made for youth players. I cannot see any cap in those.
Now the regulations state that each Club must nominate a minimum of seven Home Grown Players on their Team Sheet of Players for all League Competition Matches (including Play Off Matches).
I also believe that there will be rules around playing a weakened team at the end of the season with fines so that will have an influence on playing youth players. I also believe there are financial incentives in place for clubs that play youth players so I suspect teams would try to ensure that such players are eligible to participate with the appropriate registration without compromising other rules. Those two situation can be contradictory at times.
In addition the rules state that an Academy Players over the age of 15 years on 1st September in any given Season may play football for a Clubs first team in that Season, and then may only do so with the written permission of his Parent, his schools head teacher and the approval of The League.
So each club will have differing circumstances and only the club will be able to answer definitively as there can be embargos, FFP rules etc particular to that club to deal with. What works for one club may not for another.
The only definitive answer is from the actual club concerned.

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