Today, Josh Wolff became the latest victim of what seems to be blatant discrimination by the UK authorities against American soccer players. Wolff joins an illustrious list of American players including Cobi Jones, the most capped player in US history in being rejected by a work permit to play in the UK. Thus Wolff’s move from MLS to Derby County, the former club of John Harkes has been killed.
The same way the UK once tried to keep immigrants from third world commonwealth member nations away (most notably Pakistan), the UK home office seems determined to stop the influx of American soccer players to in some way assert the superiority and purity of the English game. (as if a few American soccer players could really threaten the world stature of English soccer) . Even Brad Friedel and Bobby Convey who have gone on to have excellent careers in England were rejected in earlier attempts to secure employment in England, and it seems the snobbishness of English football is to blame for all this trouble. The official explanation from the UK office is that Wolff played in an insufficient number of internationals over the past few years but considering he has played in the last two world cups, isn’t that argument just plain dumb?
Wolff will remain with the KC Wizards of MLS and sadly his dream of playing in English Football is probably dead. What a pity.