Arsenal’s 2010/11 squad – the new rules, the transfers, the list

Welcome to the Untold Intrepretation

By Tony Attwood

As the transfer guessing game starts (according to my diary tomorrow’s July 1), here’s where we are starting from – the squad for the new season.

This season for the first time the “25” year rule applies.  We’ve been through this in detail a number of times (see “The Players” section of Untold for all the details,) and this piece pulls together this, that, the other, and some more, into a remarkable coherent whole.

I do appreciate that there are different interpretations of the “25” rule – but we settled on our view earlier in the summer, and so this is now the Untold Interpretation…  A copy of it is provided at the end of this piece.

It is because there are so many stories and interpretations of the new rules floating around that I have thought it helpful to draw up our list of players reflecting the new rules – which makes it easier to see who we have got, and where we have got spaces under the “25” rule.

First, the mainstream squad, over 21 years old as of 1 January 2010.  The maximum number of players allowed under the new rules is 25, of whom eight must be home grown (for a definition of home grown, see part six at the end of the article, but in general terms it means that the fertilizer used was bought at Asda).

1 Almunia
2 Fabianski
3 Mannone  (Home Grown Player No 1)
4 Sagna
5 Eboue
6 Vermaelen
7 Djourou  (Home Grown Player No 2)
8 Clichy  (Home Grown Player No 3)
9 Song  (Home Grown Player No 4)
10 Denilson  (Home Grown Player No 5)
11 Diaby
12 Fabregas  (Home Grown Player No 6)
13 Rosicky
14 Arshavin
15 Nasri
16 van Persie
17 Eduardo
18 Bendtner  (Home Grown Player No 7)
19  Chamakh

20. Laurent Koscielny (not officially signed, but any moment now)

Places 21-25 currently vacant for players over 21.  If all four places are filled one of these will have to be a home grown player.  If Campbell were to resign he would count as Home Grown.

Second, the under 21 year olds as of 1 January 2010. No limit on numbers who can be on this list.

1  Szczcesny 19 Home Grown
2  Gibbs 20 Home Grown
3  Traore 20 Home Grown
4  Eastmond 19 Home Grown
5  Ramsey 19 Home Grown
6  Wilshere 18 Home Grown
7  Walcott 20 Home Grown
8  Vela 20

Big point here is that in the coming years with these guys coming through, we are not going to have any of the problems other teams will, in keeping the home grown number at eight.

Third, the up and coming players who might just enter the fray this year…  Obviously, no limit on numbers as they are all under 21.

  • Central defence: Nordtveit, Bartley
  • Defensive midfield: Emmanuel Thomas (or virtually anywhere else),
  • Attacking midfield: Lansbury, Barazite
  • Attack: Wellington Silva, Afobe

Fourth, The new youngsters already signed this summer

I am not saying that they will be in the squad, but this is just for the record.

  • Dutch Under 17 international Kyle Ebecilio.
  • Norwich City striker Philip Roberts.
  • Argentinian goalkeeper Emilio Damián Martínez

Which brings us on to the full working squad…

  • Goal: Szczensy, Almunia, Fabianski, Manone
  • Central defence: Vermaelen, Djourou, Nordtveit, Bartley, Koscielny
  • Wide defence: Sagna, Eboue, Clichy, Gibbs, Traore
  • Defensive midfield: Song, Denilson, Emmanuel Thomas,  Eastmond, Ramsey
  • Attacking midfield: Nasri, Lansbury, Barazite, Diaby, Fabregas, Rosicky, Wilshire, Merida, Walcott
  • Attack: Arshavin, Van Persie, Wellington Silva, Afobe, Eduardo, Chamakh, Vela, Bendtner


To conclude, here’s the Untold Interpretation of the rules for the “25”

Squad registration list must be submitted at the end of the transfer window:  31 August 2010, and then again on 31 January 2011.

Squad size limit – Maximum 25 players over 21 years. No limit for under-21 players.

Age definition – 1 January of the season’s starting year. 1 January 2010 for the 2010/11 season.

Home-grown quota – 8 of the 25 squad places can only be filled with home-grown players.  Thus, only 17 foreign-grown players (over 21 years) are allowed.  For the purposes of all this stuff, Wales counts as England, but Scotland and N Ireland don’t.

Home-grown (1) age – All club registrations before the age of 21 (at the end of the season).

Home-grown (2) home – All clubs registered with the English or Welsh FA.

Home-grown (3) length – Minimum period of 3 seasons or 36 months (continuous or not).

Untold Arsenal, the home of beauty, truth, and Billy the Dog

Making the Arsenal – the second edition has arrived and is at the publisher’s warehouse.  It’s not really that different from the first edition, but if you haven’t been bought a first edition, you really should try the second.  It’s jolly good.

29 Replies to “Arsenal’s 2010/11 squad – the new rules, the transfers, the list”

  1. Hi Tony – you left Merida on the ‘full working squad’.

    It’ll be rather interesting to see how he gets on at Athletico this season. He definitely had something about him.

    What little I have read and heard of Nordtveit doesn’t convince me but I have high hopes for Bartley in a couple of years. But then I am reminded that I had high hopes for Ayling too – who permanently joined Yeovil Town, which my uncle often frequents, last season.

  2. Does anyone know how other teams are shaping up?? Would be interesting to see if any others are taking this seriously or not.

  3. Stuart – I think the changes at Chelsea suggest they are taking all the changes (including the financial fair play rules) very seriously and working towards them now. But any club who tried to play a player not on the 25 list, but over 21, would then be guilty of playing an ineligible player, and so would be deducted points.

  4. I know what you mean about Ayling. Of course it could be any reason – maybe we just have too many of these youngsters, but it was a surprise to see that on the Arsenal site. What’s sad is that he was one of the kids who joined us age 10 – and I would love to see some of those come through.

  5. What was even stranger about Ayling was he had only signed a pro contract with Arsenal a few months before and had just been feted in The Guardian as a bright prospect.

    When you add to that the fact that central defence is the area which most would cite as being weakest amongst the youth prospects, from the outside it seems an even odder decision.

    P.S. Pliz weager, plizzzzzzzz.

  6. Jonny it makes me think that there must be someone else who is so stunning that they know they won’t be able to give Ayling a chance OR there has been a falling out over a matter of discipline OR the player has been convinced that he needs to play NOW and that by playing for Yeovil he will be able to attract the attention of Manchester United, many of whose supporters live in Somerset.

    So let’s hope its the former and that there is someone lurking somewhere who is so brilliant, that he is the new Tony Adams only without the drinking.

  7. Tony -update from Young Guns on the latest crop to be released.

    plus a claim we are after the Algerian defender ‘Halliche’ who is 23.

    Reading the comments many seem to think Nordtveit is the real deal – though I still fancy he is a Carling Cup player rather than anything more involved.

    If we DO sign Halliche as the other defender, I can hear the Le Grove complaints already – no big name signing, typical cheapskate Wenger, too young etc etc

  8. Whereas Untold Arsenal will be pleased with the fact that the four defenders with the club could all be playing for us in ten years time if they have the quality. Great for continuity.

    The only issue I can see for us is what do we do when all the Young Guns are over 21? There’s going to be intense competition to get in the 25 in a couple of years.

  9. Yes, there will be intense competition. Anyone who doesn’t make it should be sold for a decent price though.

  10. Nice one.

    And on a side note, maybe Tony Adams wouldn’t have been Tony Adams without the drinking…

  11. Look at it this way… there are 2 different caps/restrictions.

    1. We cannot employ more than 25 over 21 (21 as of 1st 2010) professional footballers
    2. We cannot employ more than 17 non HG footballers

  12. Wenger said that we conceded too many goals last season and that the defense need strengthening. So far, on paper, we don’t look more solid. I thought he meant that he would sign a big name, preferably someone with PL experience. Maybe Konscielny is top shit but it’s not easy beeing a rookie in the PL. I think we got lucky with Vermaelen. Maybe Wenger has a lot of faith in Djourou. My worst fear it to see Vermaelen getting a serious injury.

  13. Relax Robbie, it’s not even July 1st yet and Le Boss is busy in Africa. Things will come to pass in good time. Hopefully Mark Schwarzer first.

  14. Just in case Joe Cole and Sol Campbell decided not to sign for Arsenal, then who will be our final home grown player? And the problem seems to be only for this season bcoz by next season we.ll hav walcott becoming 21 years old. So who’s goin to fill that gap for this year?

  15. Unless Jay Simpson is sold or loaned out for the season he would qualify as homegrown if we needed to make up the numbers. Kerrea Gilbert would have done too but apparently he’s just been released. If Campbell, Fabregas and Simpson all leave, though, we’re down to six homegrown and would have to sign a minimum of two eligible players.

  16. “by playing for Yeovil he will be able to attract the attention of Manchester United, many of whose supporters live in Somerset.”


  17. Just checked up, Walcott is 21.

    He was born in March 1989, which makes him 21 and 3 months.

  18. Aaditya- Walcot will become 21 on march 2010. And according to the rules the player should be 21 by 1st january 2010. So walcot is not included in our over 21 years old group. So the question still remains. Who’s gonna be our last home grown player?

  19. Still at 7 then, my bad.

    Is that why we seem to be so interested in Joe Cole then?

  20. ya…that seems to be d reason…but other than cole and campbell, there hasn’t been any potential home grown player targeted. So it worries me a little.

  21. I would like us to get Micah Richards if there was a possibility of Man Citeh selling to us, but keeping Sol now seems more reasonable. Sol is always about money so it wouldn’t suprise me if he is aware of Arsenal’s need for a homegrown player and is using Celtic as a bargaining chip. Smart move although I think he owes us for ressurecting his career and for being forgiving of his past antics.

  22. Tony, how can Wilshere be classed as ‘Homegrown’ when he has not been trained for three years between the ages of 16-21? As he is just 18 he has only trained for 2 years!

  23. Mike – the under 21s dont count towards the “25” so their home grown-ness is in effect irrelevant. However I thought it would be helpful to include in the under 21s the note as to whether they will qualify for being home grown if they stay to 21.

    I think this sort of calculation is exactly what the “25” is all about – that clubs should be thinking about which players to develop over time. Certainly the club can’t get to each July and then think, “right how many of these guys are home grown”.


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