Heads of Turkish football clubs came together in Istanbul yesterday to discuss a controversial regulation in the local leagues and proposed changes to it. Five clubs endorse increasing the limit on foreign players, Trabzonspor Chairman Ahmet Ağaoğlu says, while other clubs are against changes to the current regulation where teams can field all foreign players in their starting 11s.
The issue is more about promoting homegrown talent and for some, has even nationalist tones. For Ağaoğlu, whose club alternately relies on young talents like Abdülkadir Ömür and Yusuf Yazıcı as well as internationals, the limit should be decreased to eight gradually. Speaking to reporters after the meeting of Foundation of Union of Clubs, Ağaoğlu said foreign player regulation was "said to ease economic woes and prevented rise in transfer fees" but that was not the case apparently. "We see clubs' debts doubled, even tripled recently," Ağaoğlu said.
He said his club always followed a policy of having at least five local talents who started their career in Trabzon's junior team. He also acknowledged that Trabzonspor "made a mess" with the transfer of foreign players referring to lawsuits by foreign players against Trabzonspor over unpaid wages.
Beşiktaş Chairman Fikret Orman says they backed the continuation of current limit but there can be changes such as incentives to clubs to have more local players. "We want the regulation to stay in place, at least for the next season. The limit should stay same but there can be a change, an incentive, to increase fees for Turkish players," said Orman, whose team mainly depends on international talent in the Süper Lig.