English clubs to provide largest share of talent at Russia 2018

Nearly three in four players at this summer's World Cup will come from European clubs, with English sides supplying 130 of them, 49 more than the second biggest provider Spain.

England's Raheem Sterling (left) shakes hands with Stan Collymore during the media day at St George's Park, Burton.

In total, 34 English clubs will be represented in Russia, compared to 22 German clubs and 21 from Spain, but the 130 English-based players at the tournament is nearly double the figure for Germany.

Manchester City lead the way with 16 players on national squads, one more than Real Madrid and two more than Barcelona.

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Chelsea and Spurs are tied with Paris St Germain at 12 players apiece, one more than Manchester United. Leicester, Liverpool and Arsenal are also among the top 20 in terms of club representation.

These numbers all come from the European Club Association’s (ECA) analysis of the 32 23-man squads at Russia 2018.

In a statement, the ECA general secretary Michele Centenaro said: “ECA player release analysis aims to provide a comprehensive overview of the pivotal role clubs play in making major national team tournaments possible.

“The results of this study demonstrate that European clubs are the foundation of the game.”

The ECA is the organisation that emerged from the old G-14 group of elite clubs and now represents more than 220 leading clubs across the continent.

Overall, one in three clubs releasing players to the tournament belong to the ECA and more than half of the 736 players in Russia this summer play for ECA clubs.

The release of this data is a timely reminder from Europe’s clubs that they employ most of the talent at football’s biggest event and therefore should be properly compensated if that talent gets injured and consulted if FIFA is considering any new venture that involves their employees, such as new international tournaments or expanded Club World Cups.