Youth Teams

With new manager Paul Harsley at the helm, this was a season of consolidation for Manchester City’s Elite Development Squad (EDS), while the Academy enjoyed another fine year.

In the EDS, though there was a frustrating group stage exit in the UEFA Youth League, the City youngsters hugely impressed in the Checkatrade Trophy before bowing out at Sunderland in the quarter-finals. Five EDS players also made their first team debuts over the course of the campaign.

The Academy celebrated a number of tournament wins across the age groups. Guided by manager Gareth Taylor, the U18s won the Premier League Under-18 Cup, beating Middlesbrough 1-0 in the final at the Riverside thanks to a wonderful strike from Felix Nmecha.

Taylor’s young charges also demonstrated their ability and character by reaching the FA Youth Cup final – our fourth appearance in the showpiece game in five years – only to lose out to Liverpool 5-3 on penalties after the game ended 1-1 after 90 minutes and extra time.

A total of 51 players represented their country from U14-23, including 25 England players.

Read More

Winning performances from the boys’ teams across age groups

SOURCE: Manchester City

Homegrown Talent

Educational achievements of the Academy players in 2018-19

SOURCE: Manchester City

Insights
Insights

Developing our Young Players

For Jason Wilcox, Academy Director, the Academy’s ultimate objective is to create players for the first team. Alongside this, Manchester City also places a heavy focus on creating well-rounded and capable young people. Player development is built around three pillars:

  • Football – Developing style, identity and technical excellence
  • Performance – Ensuring that players are physically and psychologically able to cope with the demands of the modern game
  • The person – Developing the individual and how they conduct and represent themselves.

“We say to the players, ‘You’re at one of the world’s leading academies – how are you going to make yourself the best?’

“Our Academy is a high-performance environment, but within that, we try to create an environment in which players maintain their passion and love for the game. We also ask everyone to sign up to a code of conduct, so when a player or staff member joins the Academy, they know what is expected of them in terms of how they represent themselves and the football club in the wider world.

“Success is an Academy that develops – we are always working to create relevant challenges for our players and to ensure the right environment for them to grow.”