Prior to this referendum numerous foreign players did not have to qualify for work-permits on the basis they held a European passport. Being part of the European Union meant you could move to any country in the EU and gain employment.
Players who didn't found it a lot harder to get permission from the government based on work-permit restrictions.
According to reports from British media outlets including The Guardian and The Telegraph, the following players would not have qualified for work permits, based on the current criteria for non-EU players, had they not had European passports.
Joao Carlos Teixeira
David de Gea
Daniel Sanchez Ayala
Virgil van Dijk
Patrick van Aanholt
Jose Manuel Jurado
West Ham United
In the immediate future all current contracts will be honored and the working permits system will be reformed over the next two years. Further repercussions could arise as a result of the British Pound devaluing, which it has done so rapidly in the hours since the referendum which could result in players demanding higher wages and foreign clubs demanding more money for the transfer of players.
The current regulations state:
- Footballers for national associations ranked between 1 and 10 of the FIFA Aggregated World Rankings to have played at least 30% of competitive international matches (FIFA World Cup finals, FIFA World Cup qualifying groups, FIFA Confederations Cup, and continental cup qualifiers and finals (e.g. UEFA European Championships and qualifiers) in the 24 months (or 12 months for players under 21) before the transfer;
- Footballers for national associations ranked 11-20 of the FIFA Aggregated World Rankings to have played at least 45% of games;
- Footballers for national Associations ranked 21-30 to have played at least 60%;
- Footballers for national associations ranked 31-50 to have played at least 75%.
Players that meet these criteria are automatically granted a work permit. Exceptions can be made if they do not, but the transfer must be approved by a panel who takes into account such as transfer fee, a player’s salary and the number of matches played in one of the top six European leagues and in continental competitions such as the Champions League.