How Brexit changed the future of football
Or: A handy guide to understanding GBE and its effects on the Premier League
If you’re reading this from the UK, you’ll have noticed the effects of Brexit everywhere. It’s changed where our food comes from, how we can travel, and the price of simply existing on this island.
Not even football has escaped its clutches. Alex Stewart explains how Brexit has changed - and is still changing - the way clubs from England’s football pyramid are buying, selling and developing their young talent.
When the United Kingdom left the European Union, football, like every industry, was forced to adapt its rules on employment. The GBE - Governing Body Endorsement - was introduced, a kind of pre-permit required to receive immigration status sponsorship and the right to remain and work in the UK.
These rules have been in effect since January 1st, 2021. Then, in June this year, they were changed again. And it’s this latest revision that is of interest to us, as it concerns young players in particular: now defined as anyone born on or after 1 January 2002.
First, let us examine the situation immediately post-Brexit…
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