England’s recent performance at the World Cup in Brazil led many to question whether an influx of foreign talent into the English Premier League was killing the national team. In early 2013 I collected data on the percentage of indigenous players playing in the top 3 European Leagues and the percentage of local players that played in Europe during the 2012-2013 season. The data is below.
Maybe this is the answer to England’s problem and maybe not. Here’s another hypothesis to ponder.
The World Cup involves an awful lot of travel, first to the hosting country and then trips every few days to different locations. Teams need to be adept playing in many different environments and stadiums. Since the reconstruction of Wembly all English home matches have been played at the stadium. This is not true of Germany or Spain. For example, during the qualifying campaign, both Spain and Germany played their home matches in nine different stadiums (see maps below). No venue was used twice. The players had to get used to playing in different locations and in front of different people.
Of course, this might all be rubbish too. I need to look at data for England during the redevelopment of Wembly?
Something to ponder though....