Cap placed on club imports - December 13 2012

Cap placed on club imports

December 13 2012

Shepparton News

Regional Premier League clubs will be allowed to field a maximum of six international players next season, under a new rule.

In the competition’s inaugural season, clubs were given free rei n to sign as many overseas players as they wished.

However, this led to an abundance of imported players across the league, often to the detriment of local -based players.

President of league-governing body Goulburn North East Football Association Frank Trimboli said the cap was designed in consultation with the clubs and implemented at a meeting last Friday.

‘‘You need marquee players to make the competition more exciting, but we don’t want international players overshadowing our local talent, so we need to have a sort of happy medium,’’ Trimboli said. ‘‘We were trying to design an ex-radius rule, but it’s not that easy, so we thought the easiest thing is to put a cap on international players.

‘‘Six is still probably still a bit high, but we didn’t want to be aggressive from year one to year two to go from open down to four or five.

‘‘There are 15 or 16 names on a teamsheet, so it still means the other eight should comprise national players.’’

Clubs will be required to submit their international playing list to GNEFA and once the cap of six is reached, no more international players will be allowed to sign.

International players can be replaced as needed up until the transfer deadline.

According to Trimboli, an international player had been defined as ‘‘any player on a visa of any type’’.

A universal cut-off date for player registrations was also ratified at the meeting, with players — international and otherwise — unable to sign for any RPL club after June 30.

Eight clubs have committed to a second season, with West Griffith and Yoogali Football Club not returning next year.

‘‘The first year we accepted anyone to kick it off, but at the end of the day it is a competition for strong teams and I guess they had to gauge it for themselves,’’ Trimboli said.

‘‘It’s not that they were really disappointed with the competition, I guess they just thought the competition was stronger than they are probably capable of competing with.’’

An RPL standing committee has been formed and will comprise a representative from each of the eight member clubs and a member of the GNEFA board of directors. That board will be elected at the association’s annual general meeting on Monday.

Frank Trimboli has been nominated as president, Frank Papallo as t reasurer and Luke Slater as secretary, while two directors will be elected from four nominees, Jimmy Kalafatis, Michael Crisera, Mick Arthur and Stefo Radevski.


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