Shay Given is backing City’s younger goalkeepers to emulate him after impressing him since his arrival at City last week.
The 32-year-old, who made a fine debut against Middlesbrough on Saturday, supplanted Joe Hart but he is giving encouragement to both Hart and Kasper Schmeichel based on the welcome they have given him and from what he has seen from working with them at Carrington.
Given was a similar age to Hart & Schmeichel when understudying Tim Flowers at Blackburn Rovers in the mid-1990s, and he’s convinced both will make the most of their talents in long careers.
Shay says, “Both Joe and Kasper were fantastic last week. It must have been difficult for them, they have both played in the first team and seen an older, experienced keeper step into the team.
“I would like to think I can help the other guys to improve. I was at Blackburn behind Tim Flowers, and I learned an awful lot off him, and I hope that the guys here do as well from me. They will be better goalkeepers in the future and for this club.
They are both 21, which is still young, and they could have 20 years left in the game. They both have big futures ahead of them.
After a first week at City that started with his arrival and ended with his eye-catching debut, his second week sees him away on international duty. As soon as the 2010 World Cup qualifier is over he heads back to prepare for a tough away assignment at Fratton Park, and previewing another busy few days Shay adds,
“A lot of the lads are playing in friendlies, but our game is not, it is a World Cup qualifier. It will be a hugely important game for us, and after that I am looking to the recovery plan here at City. It will be a case of get the right fluids in for Saturday, and the right recovery as well because it’s another big game for us at Portsmouth.”