Greg Dyke hopes Brexit gives young English players a chance in parting letter to FA board

FA chairman Greg Dyke
Image: Greg Dyke left Wembley as FA chairman for a final time on Thursday

After three years as FA chairman, Greg Dyke emailed a parting message to his former colleagues.

The message provided an insight into the areas in which he feels progress has been made and what his successor must do to protect the FA and the national game.

Here is Dyke's email in full...

Dear All,

As this is my final week as chairman of The FA, I thought I'd write to everyone to say thank you for all the support you've given me over the past three years. I think we have made real progress in improving the FA and improving the service we give.

While we haven't done well in the two senior men's tournaments in my time - the World Cup in Brazil and this summer's Euros in France - I believe we have put in place some of the basics we will need to fulfil my publicly stated ambition for England to win the World Cup in 2022.

The performance of our Under-19's this week in Germany shows we are heading in the right direction. Remember these are many of the same players who won the Under-17 Euros two years ago and they will be in their prime by 2022. However, the problem still remains that these players need Premier League experience if they are to grow into the talented, mature players we need.

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In fact getting our young players real experience at the top level still remains, I believe, English football's biggest problem. Fewer home-grown players than ever started matches in the Premier League last year. Although I was not a supporter of Brexit, it could be that by leaving the EU this problem could be solved.

If the FA and the government were to have the determination to restrict the flow of European players coming to play in Britain to the very best and introduce quotas on the number of British players in Premier League sides it could be changed quickly.

At the moment many very average European players are increasingly taking the slots which could be going to talented young English players from clubs' academies.

In three years we have also made progress in the women's game with both the growing importance of the Women's Super League and the success of our team in coming third in last year's World Cup. The latter showed what team spirit can achieve. And well done to the squad for reaching the Euro finals next year.

At the grassroots we have started the extensive programme we need to improve facilities. The first two of the Parklife centres will open in Sheffield this autumn and hopefully they will be the first of many as we improve facilities across the cities and towns of England. We can no longer leave this to cash-strapped local authorities, the FA has to take a lead in this.

I believe St George's Park will grow in importance as our radically changed coach education programme for both men and women takes root. We need more and better coaches at most levels of the game and hopefully that is what we will produce in the years to come, including many more from the BAME community.

In my time we also took a public lead in the movement to rid football of Sepp Blatter and the corruption which dominated FIFA. I wish his successor Gianni Infantino the very best in an incredibly difficult role but I am quietly optimistic that he can succeed.

Finally The FA's out-dated governance system still needs radical reform - a reform I have failed to achieve. I hope my successor has better luck with the Council than I have, if not I am certain the time will come when Government finally and rightly decides enough is enough and intervenes.

In Martin Glenn and his executive I believe we have an outstanding management team who can lead The FA in the years ahead to great success.

Again thank you to everyone who has been so supportive over the past three years, I have enjoyed getting to know many of you.

Best wishes,
Greg 

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