– Homegrown players are defined as those having been trained at a club or clubs in England or Wales for three years before the end of the season in which they became 21.

– Homegrown players do not have to be English.

– Clubs are also permitted to register and play an unlimited number of under-21s.

– New Premier League legislation states that clubs will have to include 8 homegrown players in a senior squad of no more than 25.

– If clubs cannot fill their quota of eight homegrown players, then their senior squads will be short.

– While the transfer windows are open, clubs may change their squads as many times as they want.

– The 25-man squad must be submitted by 6pm on 31st August.

I’ve compiled this list by looking at what the official site and Sky Sports regard to be our first team squad. Of course there are more players than this that would be regarded as home grown, but they are more strongly linked with the Reserves. These players have either played for United, featured on the bench or enjoyed strong seasons for Championship clubs (e.g. Cleverley hasn’t yet made his United début but he was named Watford’s Player of the Year in the season just gone). United will start the season with an impressive 19 home-grown on the first team books. Of those 19, 14 of them have represented the first team already, and 13 of them have represented the first team on 20 occasions or more.

Then when you consider that our current Reserves are the champions of England, think of what our homegrowns could look like in three years considering them and what we have already.

Of course we have to bear in mind that some of these players won’t be here in three years time, so this is just a rough idea, but it is still a pretty good indication of what we’ll have available.

We will be looking at the homegrown squads of our rivals and take considerable interest in Chelsea, who have just 5 homegrown  players, meaning they can only submit a squad of 22, as well as the U-21s.

nb. Ritchie de Laet misses out by a couple of months. Owen Hargreaves, despite being English, missing out because he didn’t play in the Premier League until he was 26.