Local links part of club identity

Discussion in 'Manchester United Forum' started by golden_blunder, Nov 30, 2017.

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do you care about local identity?

  1. im from Manchester area and I feel it’s important to retain local links

    29.9%
  2. I’m from Manchester and I don’t care about local links

    0.7%
  3. I’m not from Manchester and I feel it’s important to retain local links

    67.9%
  4. I’m not from Manchester and I don’t care about local links

    1.5%
  1. Nov 30, 2017
    #1

    golden_blunder Site admin. Manchester United fan Staff

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    This is NOT a thread about Lingard etc

    Through the years the club has always had a strong link to players from local areas, from the Busby Babes, to Fergies fledglings and the Class of 92. Not to mention all the other kids in between.

    As the club has become more successful and richer, they’ve spread their net further and further.
    I am curious as to how fans feel about this. Is it important to you to retain a local community feel to the club or are you happy with it to move more and more global but remain challenging?

    In other words do you care about clubs identity?

    You could ask this about multiple clubs really

    Discuss
  2. Nov 30, 2017
    #2

    clarkydaz Full Member

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    Manchester United is like Mcdonalds now, with owners who crave that
  3. Nov 30, 2017
    #3

    roonster09 Correctly predicted France to win World Cup 2018

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    Where is the option, I'm not from Manchester but think club should retain local links?
  4. Nov 30, 2017
    #4

    CG1010 Full Member

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    I am not from Manchester but think local identity plays a part for long term success of a club and football in general. Where's that option?
  5. Nov 30, 2017
    #5

    Minimalist Full Member

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    Voting options aren’t well thought out.

    But yes, the club should strive to get the best players from the local area to play for them and obviously expanding out from Manchester and beyond within the UK. The benefits are obvious and don’t even need detailed. Willingness to stay long term (provided everything in place for them) is the big one.

    Don’t think I’m comfortable with United playing shite players just because they’re local though.
  6. Nov 30, 2017
    #6

    12OunceEpilogue Full Member

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    I'm from outside the Manchester area originally but moved to Trafford a few years back, so I've gone option A.

    I feel strongly we should retain local links, including fundraising in the area, sending players to take part in youth projects etc. I think bringing players through from the local area is very important and I love our record of always having an academy graduate in the squad.

    I was worried by the recent discussions about us having a training base in London and refurbishing Old Trafford (specifically the fact some fans didn't seem to mind the possibility of replacing OT with a new build) as I feel we should be a club rooted in this area surrounded by the trappings of our past. We're an international club with fans across the country and the world but while I have no truck with big Top Red born-on-the-OT-concourse types I think it's important for fans further afield to realise the legitimacy of the pride felt by local United people (even those imported from 30 or so miles to the west :nervous:).
  7. Nov 30, 2017
    #7

    golden_blunder Site admin. Manchester United fan Staff

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    Bloody autocorrect
  8. Nov 30, 2017
    #8

    SirAF Ageist

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    It’s obviously important but not at the expense of winning. If a lad from Vanuatu is better than the biggest talent in Salford - then so be it.
  9. Nov 30, 2017
    #9

    walkinhop Full Member

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    Not from Manchester but the ties should be important and nurtured and invested in. However, all this should be done without endangering the club, not doing it for the sake of doing it.
  10. Nov 30, 2017
    #10

    Plato Banned

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    I wouldn't be adverse to having a token Mancunian player in our 2027/28 treble winning squad as a nod to the local area, but ultimately I don't really care if the talent isn't there.
  11. Nov 30, 2017
    #11

    acnumber9 Full Member

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    I think it's incredibly important and something that has been lacking in our squad. Spurs have benefited from a nucleus of British players and while talent is always the most important thing there is more to football than just that.
  12. Nov 30, 2017
    #12

    Florida Man Cartoon expert and crap superhero

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  13. Nov 30, 2017
    #13

    JPRouve can't stop thinking about balls - NOT deflategate

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    I strongly believe that it's important for the club to cultivate a local identity and have solid ties to the community. Sports is one of the easiest way to unite people, so if the club has the means to be an important figure in the local community then he should.
  14. Nov 30, 2017
    #14

    Diablodave Full Member

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    Great discussion topic and if you look at some of the local players who have made the grade at the club over the premier league era, we have certainly done quite well. You could say at any one point in history, we have probably always had a local lad within our matchday squad:
    Gary Neville
    Phil Neville
    Paul Scholes
    Nicky Butt
    Wes Brown
    Danny Welbeck
    Marcus Rashford
    Jesse Lingard
  15. Nov 30, 2017
    #15

    SkeppyRed Lineups Game Winner 2012/13

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    It's a necessity for the most successful teams to include players that have a strong connection to the fans. It also helps the foreign players to integrate.
  16. Nov 30, 2017
    #16

    owlo New Member

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    I'm from Manchester and believe it is important. The fact that City seem to be winning hearts and minds, as well as having a far more positive impact on the community irks me a little. They really are becoming 'Manchesters team' whilst we seem somewhat isolated.
  17. Nov 30, 2017
    #17

    buchansleftleg Full Member

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    I wouldn't sacrifice our competitiveness for it, but with our resources, if we can't find the best young player in the greater Manchester Area and they are not good enough to be a significant squad player then We are failing as a club and the region is failing to inspire kids into sport.

    I'm not expecting each generation of kids to produce a messi or ronaldo, but each should be producing a technically accomplished squad player, who can use both feet and contribute to the team.
  18. Nov 30, 2017
    #18

    King.of.Red New Member

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    we still need local links because they have more loyalty to the club. of course to find gem like Rashford is very difficult.
  19. Nov 30, 2017
    #19

    Rasendori Full Member

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    I care about the number of players from the United Kingdom, home grown, players that represent the English National team, young talents, and the academy. Utilizing players from our academy has helped us out during some of our most bleakest moments. Take Mark Robins, for instance. His goal against Nottingham Forest in the 3rd round of the Fa Cup in 1990, took considerable pressure off Sir Alex. The atmosphere from fans had become raucous, the media predicted that his career was predicated on the result of the match, and the contextual factors dictated that Man Utd were floundering in 15th place, which is particularly noteworthy considering we hadn't finished in the bottom half of the table since 1975, excluding the acquisition of Sir Alex where we finished in the bottom table in 3 of his first 4 seasons. So, even if it's conjecture that Fergie would've been sacked that day, that moment, had we lost that game, the Fa Cup being Fergie's first trophy unequivocally had a galvanizing influence on Fergie, and therefore United. A month after academy graduate, Mark Robins scored in the 3rd round of the Fa Cup, we were losing 1-0 to Millwall in the league, on the 10th February, and had we lost that game we would've went bottom of the league, due to us losing at home to Spurs and Crystal Palace respectively. Fortunately, Mark Hughes who had his youth career at United scored in the game we ended up 2-1. Speaking of Mark Hughes, a player who had his youth career at United, scored a brace against Barcelona in the European Cup Winners' Cup final, (Clayton Blackmore, and Lee Sharpe, youth graduates were also in the starting berth) which was symbolically our first European trophy since 1968. It gave both Sir Alex and United conviction, as exemplified by, "if we are enough to win a top European trophy, we're certainly good enough to win the league." Needless to say, Fergie who had his tenure at the club in jeopardy went on to be our most successful manager ever, managing the club for a further 23 years, winning the league 13 times in the process, and establishing himself as the seventh longest serving manager in European history!

    Conversely, the tradition predates Ferguson. Sir Matt Busby was predominantly responsible for transforming the fortunes of the club, after the Second World War. Contextually, It was the case that our first league Championship was secured in1 908, six years after we had officially changed our name to Manchester United, the subsequent title followed in 1911, and thereafter we were dangling incongruously, until the Second World War reached its equilibrium thanks to Sir Matt Busby being appointed the corresponding year.

    Under his reign, Man Utd finished runners up in 1947, 1948,1949 and 1951, before winning a third league Championship in 1952. 1951 was our final season before winning the league, and it was this very year where the term "Busby Babes" was coined by Manchester Evening News journalist Frank Nicklin, as the "Busby Babes" went on to consolidate our resurgence by winning the league consecutively in seasons 1955-6, and 1956-7 with an average age of 21 and 22 respectively.

    Unfortunately, extenuating circumstances such as the Munich Air Disaster, claimed the lives of 21 people, including 8 players. One of those players in Duncan Edwards is still talked about today. Some of the most prolific names in football have spoken about the extent to which they were enamoured with him. Some claiming he would've been England's captain in 1966, some say he's the most talented player they've ever seen, and Sir Bobby Charlton said he was the only player that made him feel intimated

    Busby rebuilt his team in the 1960s, winning the league in 1965 and 1967, and winning the European Cup in 1968, with perhaps the most notable names being academy product being Nobby Stiles who marked Eusebio out of the 1966 World Cup semi – final between England and Portugal, and the fact that England went on to win the competition meant Stiles is one of three Englishmen who have won both the European Cup and the World Cup, another being Bill Foulkes the Rock of Old Trafford who was essential in helping Manchester United rebuild after the Munich disaster. He marshalled the Manchester United defence during one of the most emotional periods in the club’s history. He survived the Munich crash and managed to rescue others. In the reconstruction period that followed, he was named as captain to replace the late Roger Byrne and he was instrumental in leading Matt Busby’s ailing side back to the top of the game. After starting out in the United academy as an 18-year-old in 1950, Foulkes was promoted to the senior squad a year later. He went on to play for 19 years at the club, racking up 688 appearances. His haul of four league titles was not repeated by a United player for the next 32 years.

    Success wasn’t limited to the league though as Foulkes also won the FA Cup and memorably, the 1968 European Cup. Moreover, there is of course, Sir Bobby Charlton, George Best and Dennis Law, forming the "Holy Trinity" said to be Man Utd's most formidable trio in its existence. Two of the aforementioned in Sir Bobby Charlton and Best were home grown players. The former, Charlton enjoyed a record-setting time at United, winning domestic and continental silverware while also being named as Footballer of the Year in both England and Europe. At the international level, he was a key member of the World Cup-winning English team of 1966. Charlton survived the Munich plane crash and was instrumental in helping rejuvenate United in the following years. Playing as an attacking midfielder or a forward, he led the entertaining United sides of the 1960s and came to be recognised as a symbol of the club. Whilst, the latter entertained the crowd at a time when the club was recently in adversity, not to mention fans would spend their hard earned cash from working all week to experience a show, and Best delivered, with his charisma, flamboyant nature, and went on to be a Ballon D'or winner, as well as setting a precedent for those wearing the no.7 shirt, which is still cherished today.

    Even before Busby inspired resurgence, Manchester United teams have fielded at least one youth-team player in every match-day squad for the past 80 years. It is an unbroken tradition that stretches back to 1935, one that survived all kinds of situations and many different managers and chairmen.
    Not every academy product does as planned at the club, but it hasn’t stopped them from making a career elsewhere, take Johnny Giles for instance, he’s now regarded as a Leeds and Irish legend, as exemplified by being considered the Greatest Irish Player of the last 50 years in 2004, a commendable amount of praise.

    Fortunately, there is a plethora of academy prospects that were exceedingly talented individuals. The academy has produced one of the most renowned names in football, World Cup winners, Ballon D’or winners, Champions League winners. Obviously, from our academy there is the Class of 92 including one of the most renowned names in Football, our academy has produced Ballon D’or winners, World Cup winners. That is quite a record to be proud of.
  20. Nov 30, 2017
    #20

    Rado_N Yaaas Broncos!

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    Sorry but what the feck are you talking about?

    Both clubs have enormous impacts on the Manchester region from a charitable and community perspective, doing lots of good work and affecting many people's lives.

    The only thing City have 'over' United on this front is the redevelopment of the area around the stadium, with the training ground etc.
  21. Nov 30, 2017
    #21

    MZX7 @Vato @Varun @moses @Hectic @Solius

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    For all the benefits they have received, their biggest achievement for nearly a decade is beating Real Madrid in a UCL Group Game.
  22. Nov 30, 2017
    #22

    M16Red New Member

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    I'm from Old Trafford - M16 area and I can say Man Utd do hardly anything for the local area of Trafford which is a shame. Because there is lots of young kid looking for stuff to do..i know one lad who made it that he wasn't from Trafford he was Wythenshawe Wes Brown.
  23. Nov 30, 2017
    #23

    Rado_N Yaaas Broncos!

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  24. Nov 30, 2017
    #24

    M16Red New Member

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  25. Nov 30, 2017
    #25

    jojojo Moderator Staff

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    Players come and go, managers come and go. The one solid thing is the concept of a football team and a club, and the fans who underpin it. The local connection goes beyond the stadium it's at the heart of what it means to be a club.

    It's good to see local lads in the team - it's part of our story, that we know where some of our players came from, and that we're the team that some of those players grew up dreaming of. In practical terms, it's also easier to build a stable core if you've got some players who aren't trying to acclimatise to the weather, the accents, the city.

    As a sidenote, I'll apply it to the crowd as well, and I don't mean that you have to be born Mancunian to appreciate it. On Saturday, the match had its painful moments. The crowd was not roaring the team on, the occasional song but no real tub-thumping stuff. Yet, when the rain really started to hammer down, rattling the roof, the Stretford End burst into a rousing chorus of, "Manchester La La La La." :D It's Manchester United, and it's not just a name.
  26. Nov 30, 2017
    #26

    acnumber9 Full Member

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    It's all relative though. Spurs have performed above their station.
  27. Nov 30, 2017
    #27

    Theonas Full Member Scout

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    Of course it's important. Look at how much of a tantrum the fans of Barcelona, Real, Bayern and others throw when they feel the core of their squad is not Bavarian, German, Spanish, Catalan or whatever. It doesn't matter what exactly and it doesn't matter if it makes any sense but there needs to be something that fans can identify with, real or delusional. Other than that, we're really just cheering for 11 random sweaty men to put a ball inside a net.
  28. Nov 30, 2017
    #28

    Ødegaard formerly MrEriksen Scout

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    I think a local link is important.
    I think it's important because a good youth system with a link to the community gives you the best local talents.
    I believe it's good for the clubs profile and the community they are in if the club gives back in some ways to their community.

    I do however think being local at the detriment of the first team is bad from my perspective as a non-local fan.
    If we put local/youth players in the first team and they aren't ready for it, it will annoy me. I'll be happy about the sentiment but unhappy if it holds the club back in winning things.
    Apart from a fair few kids who have been thrown in, I can't remember players staying for long "purely" due to being local lads.
    I do think that Lingard as an example often talked about, has a value to the squad and him being local is a bonus. What's frustrating to me is watching people who would rather use youth than get in proven quality.

    I can appreciate that Man Utd have always (for as long as I've lived) mixed youth with established quality and adding both talents and premier league proven top players. But I don't think we should have weakness in our first eleven to make space for talents.
    One current semi-related example would be our left-back situation. I believe we should have gotten in a first Xi quality main left back a long time ago. We have always clamored to Shaws talent. If Shaw ever was to live up to his talent, we should have had him displace a player, not give him all the time in the world and make due with using a cb, a winger and a jack of all trades but master of none. Better to have one who does the job, a "super talent" for rotation and someone who might be ready for a step up from the youth sides as the 3rd (or 4th depending on versatility of other players).

    These days, with so many "superclubs", you can't lag behind in positions for the first 11 if you want to become one of the best teams in Europe, which I assume most United fans want for our club.

    I'd love for us to get the best of all worlds, but my first priority (as if I had a say in it) will always be the first team.
  29. Nov 30, 2017
    #29

    MancunianAngels Full Member

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    On the pitch, I genuinely don't think it matters where you are from.

    Evra wasn't homegrown, yet had a bond with fans that was above and beyond anything from most home grown players (at least, since the class of 92).

    Eric Cantona still has his name sung more than any other player over the last 25 years.

    Fletcher was probably the last home grown player that had a genuine connection with fans. Even he had to put up with the "Fergies lovechild" remarks pre 2006.
  30. Nov 30, 2017
    #30

    Erebus Full Member

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    Whilst I think local players are important, I think local links run much deeper. It's being part of the fabric of the city. It's always been an issue for me. When I taught in Manchester schools in the 80/90's, City were much more supportive/involved with school activities. You couldn't get a visit to Old Trafford (they literally wouldn't have school parties but sent you 30 copies of a printed sheet of player autographs - that was the limit of their support), whilst City were always welcoming and made arrangements for you. Things have improved now as I've taken university students to OT, but being immersed in the community means more than just having a few players from Manchester area. It's being involved in community activities, and I'm pleased to say the foundation does a really good job of that. It's significantly better than it was.
  31. Nov 30, 2017
    #31

    owlo New Member

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    Yes, but City are doing it in a far more overt way. Their campus right next to the city centre, the investment in the womans team, the recent response to the terrorist attack being a 1st aid centre, the number in full time employment in their foundation. Like it or not, they are kicking our ass in many areas.
    Last edited: Nov 30, 2017
  32. Nov 30, 2017
    #32

    Rado_N Yaaas Broncos!

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    :confused: that was at Old Trafford cricket ground
  33. Nov 30, 2017
    #33

    owlo New Member

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    Fair, got the venues mixed up for some reason. Edited it out, but doesn't detract from the rest of the post.
  34. Nov 30, 2017
    #34

    Rado_N Yaaas Broncos!

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    Both foundations do a hell of a lot, the notion that they're doing much more than us just isn't true.
  35. Nov 30, 2017
    #35

    Gary_Walsh_Nou_Camp_Hell New Member

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    It's no coinsidence that as local people were pushed away from attending games the atmosphere died.

    United is pretty soulless experience most of the time
  36. Nov 30, 2017
    #36

    owlo New Member

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    Bold undisputed. Rest is turning into a bit of a he said, she said, so not worth continuing. Though for the record, I said they are doing it in a more overt way, not that they are doing more.
  37. Nov 30, 2017
    #37

    Gary_Walsh_Nou_Camp_Hell New Member

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    City are certainly winning the PR war.
  38. Dec 1, 2017
    #38

    11101 Full Member

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    I think local links for the club are important but for players we just have to get the best that's available, wherever they come from. If we are properly present in the community local players will come naturally but I do agree from what i see we are less aggressive at maintaining that presence than City in recent years.
  39. Dec 1, 2017
    #39

    Dante Bang Average but can post Blindfolded for 15 secs

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    Wes Brown (and Danny Welbeck, fwiw) were from Longsight, in the estates off Plymouth Grove. They lived across the road from each other and Wes' dad used to take Danny to the training ground when he was a kid. I know both families.

    United's local identity means more to me than their success. Much as a Blackpool fan would want trophies but doesn't need them to justify her love for her club. If you're different, then fair play. But I always wince when I hear somebody say that 'success' is a key factor in their connection to the club.
  40. Dec 1, 2017
    #40

    M16Red New Member

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    My mistake, longsight. I just wish Utd would do more. Longsight makes more sense actually as he was at Burnage. Nice guy tho. There are so many kids in just a stones throw away from from the ground.