EDS & Academy

Barry-Murphy: Busy schedule a chance to learn and improve

Manchester City’s Elite Development Squad boss Brian Barry-Murphy believes his team will come back stronger from our hectic fixture schedule leading into November’s international break.

Between a 5-0 Premier League 2 victory over Leicester and our most recent fixture against Everton, our EDS have played seven times in the space of just 21 days.

We have featured in three different competitions during that time, as we continue our defence of the PL2 title whilst also battling to progress from the Papa John’s Trophy and UEFA Youth League group stages.

And while there have been setbacks along the way, Barry-Murphy is confident that the tests his players have had to face will have a positive impact moving forward.

“The way the games have been congested in this period has been a big challenge for our players and we’ve had a lot of players missing,” the EDS boss said.

“But so much exposure for the young players means that they’re getting the experience of having to bounce back.

“You’ve got the Rotherham game, away at Brighton conceding a late goal, Club Brugge in the UEFA Youth League, Everton away.

“Every game is a chance to improve and there’ll be loads of lessons we can take.”

Despite conceding a late equaliser away to Brighton and succumbing to a slender defeat at Everton in our most recent Premier League 2 matches, City enter the international break just two points off top spot.

Sandwiched between those two fixtures was a UEFA Youth League loss at the hands of Club Brugge, who mounted an astonishing late comeback to triumph 5-3 at the Academy Stadium.

But Barry-Murphy insists that there is no need to dwell on those recent disappointments, and instead consider them as important learning curves.


The EDS boss has also called for his players to use them to our advantage should we encounter similar scenarios further down the line.

“All of these experiences are priceless for our players.

“We just need to understand what we can do better to improve them and when we encounter those situations again, that we deal with them better.

“That’s the main thing to take from them.”