U.S. striker Agudelo’s work permit appeal rejected; Stoke City move dead


For three months, New England Revolution striker Juan Agudelo thought his future was secured in the Premiership.

The FA had other ideas.

Stoke City Chief Executive Tony Scholes and coach Mark Hughes presented their case to an appeals panel Wednesday afternoon. The process was necessary; Agudelo did not meet the FA criteria for a work permit. All players outside of the EU must feature for 75% of their national team’s games over the course of two-years to earn a permit.

The panel rejected Stoke’s case, leaving Agudelo a man without team.

“We’re bitterly disappointed that the panel rejected our appeal for a work permit for Juan,” Scholes said in a club statement. “The criteria by which the panel should make work permit application decisions are well established and have been in place for some years and, despite recent comments to the media and discussion in the media, that criteria has not changed.

“We are therefore left amazed that our application for a work permit for Juan has been rejected when you compare his talent and ability to players who have been granted a work permit on appeal in the past.”

One of those players is countryman Brek Shea who currently features for Stoke. He has garnered 24 caps for the U.S. over three three years, falling short of the FA criteria. Of those appearances, 17 have fallen within the last two years. Stoke were able to successfully argue that injuries prohibited Shea from earning more caps with the U.S. in that time frame.

The Colombian born, New Jersey bred Agudelo has not seen U.S. international action since January of this year, last appearing as a substitute against Canada in a 0-0 draw. His health wasn’t considered an issue either as he featured in 22 total games for Chivas and New England.

Stoke did not shed light on their argument for Agudelo, but were vocal in their displeasure with the process. “Unfortunately, under the rules of the appeal panel system, we were given no explanation why the application was rejected and so can only speculate as to the reasons why we have been unsuccessful,” Scholes said.

Warning: count(): Parameter must be an array or an object that implements Countable in /nfs/c12/h02/mnt/211961/domains/empireofsoccer.com/html/wp-includes/class-wp-comment-query.php on line 399

Warning: sizeof(): Parameter must be an array or an object that implements Countable in /nfs/c12/h02/mnt/211961/domains/empireofsoccer.com/html/wp-content/plugins/bmo-expo/classes/theGallery.php on line 136