Spain coach's claim

Del Bosque: Foreigners improve English game

September 22, 2010
By ESPNsoccernet staff

Spain coach Vicente del Bosque has rubbished claims that the high volume of foreign players in the Premier League is to blame for England's World Cup failure, insisting that imports from abroad help develop, not destroy, the English game.

Vicente del Bosque World Cup trophy Spain
GettyImagesVicente del Bosque masterminded Spain's first ever World Cup success this summer

After another major finals of underachievement for the Three Lions, questions were again raised as to whether the poor performance of the English national team was because of the influx of foreign talent in the Premier League.

But Del Bosque believes that particular excuse is invalid, and maintained that players from all over the globe should be welcomed into the English game, as they enrich football in the country.

"I don't think it's damaging for English football to have people from abroad. On the contrary - I think that it's quite enriching to have good coaches and the best players from around the world to play in the Premier League,'' Del Bosque said.

"I can't agree that one poor result from a national team is due to too many foreign coaches and players.

"I think the England squad has enormously talented players, so I certainly don't think it's a problem of quality. I think English football is very much up to date.''

And UEFA technical director Andy Roxburgh, also talking at the end of a three-day UEFA conference in Madrid involving the European national team coaches, agreed with Del Bosque's assessment, insisting that people should not read too much into England's World Cup exit.

"There's a chance element to it. So I think to suggest English football is in trouble because of what happened in that one game... you've noticed they've already bounced back and, as any top coach will tell you, you have to have a rebound mentality and clearly England have shown that, they have rebounded.

"Everybody can have a bad day. Vicente (Del Bosque) had a rather awkward day in Durban on the opening of the World Cup against Switzerland when they lost 1-0, but what happened? They went on to win the World Cup.

"I'm not suggesting England are going to win the Euros or World Cup here, but all I can say is watch this space. They are back and running again.''

England have beaten Bulgaria 4-0 and Switzerland 3-1 in their opening two Euro 2012 qualifiers since being knocked out of the World Cup, as well as defeating Hungary in a friendly.