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Youth Development

 
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Zoolander



Joined: 06 Mar 2004
Posts: 5905
Location: Duck Fat City Limits

PostPosted: Sat Apr 07, 2018 1:03 pm    Post subject: Youth Development Reply with quote

England are currently U17 World champions, U19 European champions and U20 World champions. People are talking of a 'golden generation' of players. I know we've heard that before but we've never had this level of success before.

What bothers me is that in those three tournament squads of a total of 60 players only 2 play for United, Angel Gomes and Dean Henderson.

Vermin have 3

Arsenal have 3

City have 5

Spurs have 5

Everton have 6

Chelsea have 14! (though almost none have ever put on a Chelsea top or will ever make a 1st team appearance)

Even the likes of Boro, Reading and Bournemouth have the same or more than us.

When the Glazer family took over, they famously cut out one of the youth squads so we effectively lost 18-20 players in that 16-19 age group and the associated coaches. That's means we've missed out on around 250-300 players since their take over.

We are no longer the club of choice for young players, we have failed miserably to build on the success of the 90's not just the class of 92 but Brown, O'Shea, Fletcher, Evans etc. 13, 14 & 15 year old kids are not growing up as United fans.

Gomes & Henderson have just 1 first team appearance between them (Gomes was an 88th minute sub in the 4-0 victory over Yeovil). There is already talk of Henderson wanting to move on due to a lack of opportunity for him. Baring in mind that the current 3rd choice is Pereira and Sam Johnstone is on loan.

Gomes is 5ft 3 and just 8 st, lets be honest, unless he's Messi good he won't make it in the Premier League, he's very small and very lightweight, it will be very hard for him.

Rashford would get into any Premier League side and McTomminay does a job for José. We are clearly being left behind in the development of young players, yet more evidence that a complete change is required in the scouting and recruitment at the club.
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Chubby



Joined: 18 Dec 2003
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 07, 2018 1:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I’m not sure 🤔

The class of ‘92 were and are an anomaly to what most youth setups achieve, if you take them out of the mix then generally speaking we may get 1 player through the ranks to the first team per season - the rest are sold off to self fund the academy itself. Not many go on to better things in terms of clubs, achievements or profile - there will be the odd one but it’s very rare.

The balance of players in the youth teams for the clubs you’ve mentioned was how it was designed to work as much as a reflection of our own club’s youth setup. Prior to this we could take the likes of Beckham from London, we can’t do that now due to the rules governing what you can take and from where. I think the spread of players is evidence of the positive impact the radius rule for English boys is fairing things up.

Academies are generally not about getting players through to the first team per se, they are about self-funding themselves and finding the odd gem along the way, but most players will be sold on. Academies for some clubs are worth more than the revenues they get from the first team. I just don’t think United need that academy revenue as much as other clubs.
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Southern Red



Joined: 08 May 2010
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 07, 2018 5:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

However you look at it, when you see how well the 'under ages' are doing and how few united players have contributed to that it is concerning.

A club of our size should be leading the way. The international youth teams should be full of United players.
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Chubby



Joined: 18 Dec 2003
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 07, 2018 6:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Southern Red wrote:
However you look at it, when you see how well the 'under ages' are doing and how few united players have contributed to that it is concerning.

A club of our size should be leading the way. The international youth teams should be full of United players.


They are, just plenty that aren’t English.
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Southern Red



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PostPosted: Sat Apr 07, 2018 6:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Chubby wrote:
Southern Red wrote:
However you look at it, when you see how well the 'under ages' are doing and how few united players have contributed to that it is concerning.

A club of our size should be leading the way. The international youth teams should be full of United players.


They are, just plenty that aren’t English.


And that's the point. The team currently dominating the unders is england, and we're not apart of it.

Im not aware of any United youngsters currently standing out in any other 'unders' team. Please enlighten me. I could do with some good news.
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Zoolander



Joined: 06 Mar 2004
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 07, 2018 6:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

But we also have none in the Northern Ireland set up (U21's or U19's) none in the Scotland set up (U21's or U19's) just one in the a sheep-botherer set up (a midfielder in their U19's) and one in the Republic of Ireland set up (a keeper in their U21's) so we're hardly attracting players that have traditionally made up the backbone of our side.

The youngsters that come from abroad, well that's been a mixed bag hasn't it. Ron Robert Zieler left and won the German league, got capped internationally and ended up winning the world cup but bizarrely couldn't get in the Leicester side. Pique left and won everything there was to win and had some people saying he was the best centre half in Europe. Januzaj has left and been pretty anonymous. Pogba left and we bought him back blowing £90m on a player most United fans are very divided on, he certainly isn't what we hoped for.

I can't really think of any other youngsters in the last 6-7 years from outside the UK that have commended even a regular place on the bench so that would be a rubbish return on our investment.

Looking at what we have now, Fosu-Mensah has impressed on occasion but then looked awful at Palace on loan, Pereira the keeper hasn't been able to force his way onto the bench, Pereira the attacking midfielder has scored once in 24 appearances for Valencia, I've only seen a few highlights from his games and he hardly seems to have set the world alight.

None of them arrive as United fans, none of them are used to English football and so far none of them have been able to command a career here in the UK so I think that policy has failed pretty much 100% so far.

No matter how you try to dress it up we simply are not attracting and developing our own young players anymore.
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1999



Joined: 14 Feb 2004
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 07, 2018 7:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm going to stick my neck out here, I don't give a flying fuck how many youth players we have representing England (or any other country for that matter).
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Chubby



Joined: 18 Dec 2003
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 07, 2018 8:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

1999 wrote:
I'm going to stick my neck out here, I don't give a flying fuck how many youth players we have representing England (or any other country for that matter).


It’s a fine point, well made 😂

I like to see youth getting a chance, as it does at United, I’m not too fussed where it comes from and feel no particular sense of pride if they’re English boys.

But I do take Zoo’s point, but I’m not sure it’s a big issue given our record of blooding youngsters. Most of the youngsters we’ve had haven’t been exceptional, the exceptional ones seem to happen once a decade or so, rather than regularly.
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Zoolander



Joined: 06 Mar 2004
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 07, 2018 8:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think you're misunderstanding me, I don't much care for international football for players that are over 21 and playing in top leagues and European club competitions but at U17, U19 and U21 it's a chance for young players to gain experience and it's a yard stick by which you measure the success of your academy.

There are other yard sticks, how many of your youth team get into the 1st team for example, hence the reason I mentioned Chelsea's 14 players out of 60 but none of them have or are likely to play for the 1st team. It's a different measurement though.

If we don't produce young players of sufficient quality to represent their country (any country) then clearly they are also unlikely to be good enough for our first team, or certainly unlikely to be given a chance in our first team.

You might not care if they get into any of the home nations youth development sides and that's fine but we also don't have a presence in the German, French, Spanish or Italian development sides either (U19 or U21) so are you suggesting that United's fine tradition of developing young players isn't important at all? Are you happy for us to continue to try to compete with City, Chelsea, PSG etc with their billionaire sponsors?

Saying we don't care about international football has become a bit of a thing for United fans but at the youth level it really is a sign that you are attracting, coaching and developing the best young talent. For us to have little of no presence in the top 7 or 8 young sides in world football means we are not attracting and working with the best young players, if you're not worried about that you should have a long hard think, it's nothing to do with flags or nations, it's a simple fact of quality and at the moment we don't have it, simple as that.

Interesting that our current U23's are currently bottom of their league and in danger of being relegated but of course, that wouldn't bother you, you don't really care. FFS!
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Southern Red



Joined: 08 May 2010
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 07, 2018 8:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Chubby wrote:
1999 wrote:
I'm going to stick my neck out here, I don't give a flying fuck how many youth players we have representing England (or any other country for that matter).


It’s a fine point, well made 😂

I like to see youth getting a chance, as it does at United, I’m not too fussed where it comes from and feel no particular sense of pride if they’re English boys.

But I do take Zoo’s point, but I’m not sure it’s a big issue given our record of blooding youngsters. Most of the youngsters we’ve had haven’t been exceptional, the exceptional ones seem to happen once a decade or so, rather than regularly.


This is where we differ. I, unlike many united supporters, actually want to see the national team do well. It makes it far, far easier when that team consists of a load of United players.

The difference between united youngsters and other great/"world class" young players of the past (90/00's), United players were winners. Be it youth leagues/cups or as part of the senior team. Many of them wouldn't have been considered world class, but they knew what was required to win and they would all play their part.

The current international crop are winners. Our lads just seem to make up the numbers. I just fear it's a sign of things to come. We seem to have fallen behind. But who gives a shit. This debate can wait for another day. Let's enjoy today's result
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Chubby



Joined: 18 Dec 2003
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 07, 2018 8:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The U23s is always a strange one, Zoo. The best u23s are either drafted into the first team or loaned out, the ones that stay there too long are unlikely to make it. It’s not a great yardstick imho because of how it gets used/abused. We have a bunch out on loan that had they been in the U23/ it would be doing much better, but conversely it would mean the u23 was not producing great talent that was ready fo step up.

In the last two season we’ve had Rashford, McTominay and Lingard all come through to establish themselves, all home nations, all doing well.

I’m involved in youth football at grass roots level, plenty of young lads heading to United, wanting to head to United. I think we will continue to produce high quality youth players, the current crop may not be the best, who knows? Time will tell.
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