EDS & Academy

Wilcox and Guardiola pay tribute to City’s Under-18 National champions

Academy director Jason Wilcox and City manager Pep Guardiola have both paid special tribute to our Under-18s and coaching team in the wake of our Premier League Under-18 National title triumph.

The City youngsters secured the crown in thrilling style with a 2-1 win away at Southampton in Thursday’s final at the St Mary’s Stadium.

It’s another magnificent achievement for Ben Wilkinson’s young side coming on the back of our Under-18 North title triumph achieved earlier this month.

In the process, City have now claimed the Under-18 National title for a third successive season following last season’s title win against Fulham and our triumph awarded on a points-per-game basis in the COVID-interrupted 2019/20 campaign.

And both Wilcox and Guardiola were quick to applaud our latest success, paying special tribute to the hard work and exemplary attitude of everyone who had made this latest success possible.

“To win the Under 18 Premier League National title for a third season in a row is the perfect way to complete another outstanding season for our Academy,” said former England international Wilcox, a Premier League title winner with Blackburn in his playing days.

“Not only has the team executed the brand of football that we want to see here at Manchester City, but they have also shown the character and commitment required to win this title three times in a row, an unprecedent achievement in itself.

“The players, coaches and every single member of staff who works to deliver this success should be incredibly proud of themselves in what has been another memorable year for us all.”

Those warm words from our Academy director were echoed by first team boss  Guardiola who has spoken regularly of his huge admiration for the work of our Academy.

“What our Under-18s have achieved again this season is remarkable,” said the City manager.

“Winning their league once was exceptional – to defend it 12 months later says everything about their mentality and consistency.

“But what is most impressive is their style. They win by playing the game the right way and for young players there is no better education than this.

“The league is the ultimate test. You have to play so many games – home and away against every team – and whoever is there on top at the end of the season is the best team and deserves to be champions.

“I want to say a huge congratulations to Ben, his staff and all the players. Enjoy this moment - you deserve to celebrate!”

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