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Hunger is back at Barca

Barcelona
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Wayne Rooney backs new 'home-grown' quota

Wayne Rooney believes the new home-grown rule, which states that each Premier League squad must have eight players to have come through a youth system in England or Wales, can only be good for the game.

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Rooney believes that the new rule will lead to a change in transfer policy at most clubs as they try to stay within the new 25-man senior squad rule, with no club able to use any player over the age of 21 not named in that squad on September 1.

Rooney told the Premier League Season Review: "I think the new home-grown rules coming in are important. As an Academy graduate myself I like to see young players coming through because I think they're vital for the future of England and the Premier League.

"I also think it's important for clubs to have a bunch of home-grown players because they are the lads who know their history. For me it's a welcome ruling because it will make the league a bit more interesting, especially in the transfer market.''

Rooney, meanwhile, believes United face a stiff task to win the title back from Chelsea. He added: "Since I signed for United I think the Premier League has got progressively harder to win.

"I know it's a cliche but there are no easy games in the Premier League. In previous seasons you might have had straightforward games where the top clubs could afford to rest players, but that's not the case anymore. Nowadays it's hard to leave players out because every game is competitive and difficult.

"The 2009-10 season was certainly the most competitive I've played in. Over the last three or four years it might have been predictable as the season has gone on who's going to win the league, but this year it was a lot more exciting.

"Many of the top teams lost more games than you probably would expect. It was very tight at the end of the season; we only lost the league by one point.''

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