Express & Star

Blow for West Brom's Darnell Furlong as EFL bans clubs from using towels to dry ball

West Brom's Darnell Furlong will have to tweak his throw in skills for next season - after a change in EFL regulations.


The former QPR full back has provided a weapon for Albion with his long throws in recent years.

During the early reign of Valerien Ismael they were an effective tool for Albion in a number of games.

His ability to arrow the ball into the box, like many players at other clubs, has been aided by being able to dry the ball with towels placed around the ground.

However, they have now been banned as part of the EFL's introduction of a 'multi-ball system'.

The authority announced a number of regulation changes at its annual general meeting this week, the majority relating to ownership and off field matters.

However, on the banning of towels, the EFL said: "The EFL will introduce a multiball system in all its competitions for the 2023/24 season.

"Match balls will be placed on cones in designated areas at pitch side to help increase the time of the ball being in play.

"Meanwhile, Clubs will no longer be permitted to use towels or other articles, including items obtained from spectators to dry footballs during matches."

It isn't a blow only to Furlong and his long throw ability.

Club's across English football have been utilising players who can launch the ball into the box from throw ins in recent years.

And back in 2018, Liverpool even appointed a designated 'throw in coach' in the form of Denmark's Thomas Gronnemark.