Loanee Denis Suarez has been included in Arsenal’s 24-man squad for the knockout stages of the Europa League, however, the inclusion of the Spaniard has led to Dinos Mavropanos missing out.
Arsenal blog resident Youth expert, Jeorge Bird, explains the reason why he was left out: “Uefa rules state that teams should name eight homegrown senior players in their squad, but the departure of Emiliano Martinez to Reading on loan means that Arsenal only named seven. Therefore, they had to name a reduced senior squad list of 24 players.”
Having only been at the club for a year, Mavropanos, 21, doesn’t count as homegrown despite his age. To clarify, UEFA defines a homegrown player as follows: “UEFA defines locally-trained or ‘homegrown’ players as those who, regardless of their nationality, have been trained by their club or by another club in the same national association for at least three years between the age of 15 and 21. Up to half of the locally-trained players must be from the club itself, with the others being either from the club itself or from other clubs in the same association.”
UEFA stress that clubs don’t have to put homegrown players on the field or on the team sheet, which is probably just as well because of the seven in the current squad; three are out for the season (Hector Bellerin, Rob Holding and Danny Welbeck), two are reserves (Carl Jenkinson and Deyan Iliev), one is leaving (Aaron Ramsey) and the other is Alex Iwobi. Players under-21 at the start of the season sit on the B-list, which is why Ainsley Maitland-Niles is considered on a par with a host of academy kids.
It would appear that you can’t move between the B and A-lists during a season, hence why Ainsley couldn’t be listed as an eighth homegrown player. At least, we guessing that’s the case. All in all, sad times for Dinos, who’ll instead have to focus on getting his minutes in the Premier League.
ARSENAL’S FULL EUROPA LEAGUE SQUAD
Goalkeepers: Petr Cech, Bernd Leno, Deyan Iliev, Arthur Okonkwo*
Defenders: Hector Bellerin, Sokratis, Laurent Koscielny, Stephan Lichtsteiner, Rob Holding, Nacho Monreal, Skhodran Mustafi, Carl Jenkinson, Sead Kolasinac, Daniel Ballard*, Tolaji Bola*, Zech Medley*, Joseph Olowu*, Tobi Omole*, Jordi Osei-Tutu*, Julio Pleguezuelo*, Dominic Thompson*
Midfielders: Mohamed Elneny, Henrikh Mkhitaryan, Aaron Ramsey, Mesut Ozil, Lucas Torreira, Ainsley Maitland-Niles*, Alex Iwobi, Denis Suarez, Matteo Guendouzi, Granit Xhaka, Robbie Burton*, Charlie Gilmour*, Ben Sheaf*, Nathan Tormey*, Gedion Zelalem*, Harry Clarke*, Trae Coyle*, Joe Willock*
Strikers: Alexandre Lacazette, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Danny Welbeck, Eddie Nketiah*, Emile Smith Rowe*, Xavier Amaechi*, Tyreece John-Jules*, Bukayo Saka*
* B List