New Brexit rules could damage Everton transfer policy

Marcel Brands (Photo by Chris Brunskill/Fantasista/Getty Images)
Marcel Brands (Photo by Chris Brunskill/Fantasista/Getty Images) /

The football authorities have announced new rules for transfers between the UK and Europe after the 1st January and these changes could affect how Everton do business in the new year window.

The impact of Brexit has been lost a bit this year with all the chaos over Covid 19, but the end of trade deals between the UK and the EU is due to happen on 1st January 2021 and this could have an affect on the transfer polices of every Premier League club, including Everton.

The Toffees have, like many English clubs, taken full advantage of the open transfer market between EU countries, especially recently bringing in players like Moise Kean and Niels Nkounkou as well as many others for their youth teams.

This approach is also one very much favoured by the club’s current Director of Football Marcel Brands since he joined Everton in 2018.

Part of the Dutchman’s strategy is to concentrate on recruiting talented and often very young teenage players who might still be a little raw, but who are longer-term prospects and can develop and increase in value if they are sold on at a later date. That though might have to change.

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The new rules announced by the English football authorities basically transfer the existing restrictions on signing overseas footballers arriving from say South America, to EU players who will now have to qualify in the same way.

In practice with the new points system it means English clubs can’t basically sign any players under-18. This does mean it will be harder to bring in some of teenage talent the Blues have been snapping up recently.

For example one player Everton signed in the recent window who wouldn’t be available under these rules, is Swedish 17-year-old midfielder Imam Jagne.

It will also possibly add to the complications around the man who signed him and his own future.

I’m sure this rule change won’t be a deciding factor in whether Brands gets a new contract, but if the club can’t as easily bring in very young players it could swing the focus of transfers towards more experienced signings.

That might also mean the club decide not to carry on with the  sort of strategy he’s been championing – so what then does that mean for his position?

This approach will also reinforce Carlo Ancelotti’s preference for bringing in established performers such as those players the Blues signed this summer.  At any rate all this further complicates things as the Toffees contemplate what they might do in January.