England manager Gareth Southgate
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Southgate reveals the Premier League is a ‘big concern’ for English football

Gareth Southgate has admitted that he has massive concerns for the future of the England national team following recent figures which highlight the lack of opportunities for English players in the Premier League.

English football has seemingly been on an uphill trend in the last 12 months or so, with the England national team having progressed to the semi-finals of last summer’s World Cup before following that up by qualifying for the UEFA Nations League finals next month.

Meanwhile, at club level, English clubs have dominated European tournaments this season, with Liverpool and Spurs reaching the Champions League final, while Arsenal and Chelsea will play each other in the Europa League final.

However, figures released today show that only 30 per cent of the regular starters in the Premier League qualify to play for England, while that figure drops to 19.9 per cent within the top six clubs.

Speaking to the BBC, England boss Gareth Southgate has said the English football must ‘arrest the slide’, with the latest figures being the lowest in EPL history.

“There’s a clear diminishing number there,” said Southgate.

“There’s some discussion around developing players that is important. There’s some discussion around work permits moving forwards which might affect some of that.

“The first thing we’ve got to do is arrest the slide. We have to stop that graph slipping.

“Because it isn’t correct to say we’re not developing good players. I think that’s really important.”

Southgate added that the England national team are in ‘big danger’ if that figure continues to drop at its current rate.

“The big concern for me is this graph continues to fall away and that we end up in 10 years’ time with an England manager who has got 15% of the league,” Southgate said.

“And why wouldn’t that happen? Because it has dropped 15% in the last seven or eight years, so there’s no sign of that being arrested because more money coming in, global market. That is a big danger for us.”