THE BLOG BY CPD FOOTBALL | The World of Indian football and beyond by Chris Punnakkattu Daniel

Indian youngster’s Brentford dream comes to an end

Brentford FC

Brentford FC

Indian footballer Prudhvi Kolaventy’s dream to sign a deal with English League One side Brentford FC has come to an end. The 18-year old forward from Hyderabad is another victim of the strict work permit regulations in the United Kingdom.

Prudhvi went to the UK earlier this year to study Business Management in Stoke-on-Trent, a city in Staffordshire county. He joined Brentford FC for trials during his time in the UK and the youngster impressed at Brentford according to StaffsLive, a website run by the Staffordshire University.

But Prudhvi failed the first year of his degree and, as a result, his student visa was cancelled.

“I came to England to study. But of course, in my mind, I was really there to find a football club and sign a professional contract,” Prudhvi told StaffsLive.

“It was very difficult because I didn’t know many football people in England. But, after my trial at Brentford, I thought I had made it. They wanted me, but, because I’m Indian, I couldn’t get the legal documents,” he continued.

Talking about football in India, the youngster added: “Although football is not my country’s national sport, a lot of people do love it. But, India does not have the top facilities or coaches or competitions – England has. That is why I came.”

Prudhvi is now hoping to find some suitable clubs in continental Europe and to fulfill dream to become a professional footballer in Europe.

The young Indian lad joins a huge list of international footballers, who fail to sign a contract with an English club due to the British work permit regulations. India star Sunil Chhetri is one of the footballers, who was denied a deal in the UK. EPL side Queen’s Park Rangers offered Sunil a three-year contract back in 2009, but the Indian international had to return to India after the British government denied him a work permit.


The criteria for footballers to obtain a British work permit
(Excerpts from the regulations)

Work permits will be issued to international players of the highest calibre who are able to make a significant contribution in footballing terms to the development of the United Kingdom game at the highest level (i.e. clubs competing in the Premier Leagues and Football Leagues in England and Scotland, the Welsh Premier League and the Irish Premier League in Northern Ireland).

To be eligible for a work permit:
• a player must have played for his country in at least 75% of its competitive ‘A’ team matches he was available for selection, during the two years preceding the date of the application; and
• the player’s country must be at or above 70th place in the official FIFA world rankings when averaged over the two years preceding the date of the application.

There are currently 204 international teams listed in the official FIFA world rankings. Those countries which have regularly achieved a 70th placing or higher over a period of two years are regarded as nations who have competed regularly at a highly competitive international level and have players of the highest standard who have contributed consistently to the achievement of that world ranking.