Charlie McNeill

Jeppers7

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Bringing kids in under 13/14 is always a challenge for a bunch of reasons.

Historically we have always brought in kids at 15-16 and in percentage terms most don't make it. The maths don't allow it.

Once kids reach 17 it becomes a different story and our success at youth level 16-18 is unrivalled with 34% of players who play in the FA Youth Cup (an U/18 competition) reaching the first team and 38% having a career in the game with other clubs. So from a players perspective if they are with United at 17 they have a 72% chance of making it in the game. Much higher than any other British club.

It's been mentioned in this thread that the likes of Greenwood would have made it if the coaching is bad. I probably agree. There are certain players who will just succeed regardless of where they are and what standard of coaching you get. Whiteside, Morrison etc Even Matt Busby said not to (over) coach George Best.

Then there are other kids who will not make the grade even if they have the best coaches in the world. But you don't know that at the time. So coaching is often about maximising those players in the 'middle ground'. There are so many factors that's it almost impossible to identify whether poor coaching is responsible. But it certainly has to be one of the factors.

I believe a club like United should have the best coaches available. (Not just coaches but in every role). The point being made in this thread is that maybe we don't. I wouldn't necessarily disagree based on things I've heard and seen.

But the bit I don't get...is that if our coaches are not the best, and taking Greenwood out of the equation, why do we get such high results with poor recruitment and coaching? There is a disconnect somewhere. And I know it isn't 83 years of luck.

The final point is that every parent wants their child to make it. Every parent thinks their child is brilliant. 30 years of attending Academy games has taught me not to buy into every parents perspective.

Like every club Academy we probably have a percentage of average players, average parents and average coaches. As long as our % is better than all the other clubs we will come out on top.

I think what the parent on this forum was saying is that there is room for improvement.

I think there always is.
Great post....I’m friends with one of the highest regarded youth coaches in Manchester. His innovative courses have been the subject of interest on sky sports and across terrestrial tv. He works partly for united coaching the youngest age groups, City are constantly approaching him for their academy. He knows the you coaching scene inside out. He tells me of our failings (investment) but also of our strengths (coaching innovation). United have the best coaches in the area, city’s strength is in their willingness to spend money and break rules and in their facilities.

Their coaching focus is wrong, outdated but traditional.

I wouldn’t be concerned about the future of Uniteds academy, there’s some outstanding kids coming through and they are being coached for individual brilliance primarily and then to fit into a framework secondly as they begin to play matches. In basic terms, learning to play in a team is easy, Gary Neville could do that. Producing individual talent is more difficult and stems from skills development at the youngest ages.
 

Prodigal7

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Bringing kids in under 13/14 is always a challenge for a bunch of reasons.

Historically we have always brought in kids at 15-16 and in percentage terms most don't make it. The maths don't allow it.

Once kids reach 17 it becomes a different story and our success at youth level 16-18 is unrivalled with 34% of players who play in the FA Youth Cup (an U/18 competition) reaching the first team and 38% having a career in the game with other clubs. So from a players perspective if they are with United at 17 they have a 72% chance of making it in the game. Much higher than any other British club.

It's been mentioned in this thread that the likes of Greenwood would have made it if the coaching is bad. I probably agree. There are certain players who will just succeed regardless of where they are and what standard of coaching you get. Whiteside, Morrison etc Even Matt Busby said not to (over) coach George Best.

Then there are other kids who will not make the grade even if they have the best coaches in the world. But you don't know that at the time. So coaching is often about maximising those players in the 'middle ground'. There are so many factors that's it almost impossible to identify whether poor coaching is responsible. But it certainly has to be one of the factors.

I believe a club like United should have the best coaches available. (Not just coaches but in every role). The point being made in this thread is that maybe we don't. I wouldn't necessarily disagree based on things I've heard and seen.

But the bit I don't get...is that if our coaches are not the best, and taking Greenwood out of the equation, why do we get such high results with poor recruitment and coaching? There is a disconnect somewhere. And I know it isn't 83 years of luck.

The final point is that every parent wants their child to make it. Every parent thinks their child is brilliant. 30 years of attending Academy games has taught me not to buy into every parents perspective.

Like every club Academy we probably have a percentage of average players, average parents and average coaches. As long as our % is better than all the other clubs we will come out on top.

I think what the parent on this forum was saying is that there is room for improvement.

I think there always is.
Great post thanks. 95% agree with what you’re saying.

The issue is that the statistics will inevitably lag the current reality and I know City have openly been taking a lot of the best local talent in the last couple of years in the younger age groups. Most here will know that. I’m not questioning our past record but what may be about to come. It’s hard to compete with a club next door that effectively has the resources of a country.

Only having a handful of people move on to be scholars this year is unprecedented for us and hopefully is just a freak year but it does make me nervous.
 

lenny_1248

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Only having a handful of people move on to be scholars this year is unprecedented for us and hopefully is just a freak year but it does make me nervous.
We have a "massive" number of scholars next year (correct me if I'm wrong). So it's probably just a random thing, that happens once in couple of years. It's only natural.
 

jb8521

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We have a "massive" number of scholars next year (correct me if I'm wrong). So it's probably just a random thing, that happens once in couple of years. It's only natural.
Yeah our u16s group next season is likely to be the strongest & highest in terms of strength in depth that its been in quite a while
 

In Rainbows

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Yeah our u16s group next season is likely to be the strongest & highest in terms of strength in depth that its been in quite a while
I'm impressed with one of the groups younger than that too (2007). I wouldn't worry about United's youth at all.
 

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I'm impressed with one of the groups younger than that too (2007). I wouldn't worry about United's youth at all.
Are they the group that beat Liverpool like 9-0 and city kept sending scouts to watch them every game? Think khoazany mentioned it years ago when they were U9s or something.
 

In Rainbows

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Are they the group that beat Liverpool like 9-0 and city kept sending scouts to watch them every game? Think khoazany mentioned it years ago when they were U9s or something.
Not sure, but from hours of footage, they seem technically up a notch as a group compared to others.
 

BringOnUnited

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Are we even going to sign this lad? The news leaked over a week ago and there's been nothing since, he doesn't need international clearance and the U18's have gone back training already.
 

jb8521

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I'm impressed with one of the groups younger than that too (2007). I wouldn't worry about United's youth at all.
Yeah & from what little I've seen the 2008s have a few exceptional players in it as well
 

mav_9me

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Are we even going to sign this lad? The news leaked over a week ago and there's been nothing since, he doesn't need international clearance and the U18's have gone back training already.
I know right?
Sack Woodward, sell Greenwood.
 

lysglimt

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Bringing kids in under 13/14 is always a challenge for a bunch of reasons.

Historically we have always brought in kids at 15-16 and in percentage terms most don't make it. The maths don't allow it.

Once kids reach 17 it becomes a different story and our success at youth level 16-18 is unrivalled with 34% of players who play in the FA Youth Cup (an U/18 competition) reaching the first team and 38% having a career in the game with other clubs. So from a players perspective if they are with United at 17 they have a 72% chance of making it in the game. Much higher than any other British club.

It's been mentioned in this thread that the likes of Greenwood would have made it if the coaching is bad. I probably agree. There are certain players who will just succeed regardless of where they are and what standard of coaching you get. Whiteside, Morrison etc Even Matt Busby said not to (over) coach George Best.

Then there are other kids who will not make the grade even if they have the best coaches in the world. But you don't know that at the time. So coaching is often about maximising those players in the 'middle ground'. There are so many factors that's it almost impossible to identify whether poor coaching is responsible. But it certainly has to be one of the factors.

I believe a club like United should have the best coaches available. (Not just coaches but in every role). The point being made in this thread is that maybe we don't. I wouldn't necessarily disagree based on things I've heard and seen.

But the bit I don't get...is that if our coaches are not the best, and taking Greenwood out of the equation, why do we get such high results with poor recruitment and coaching? There is a disconnect somewhere. And I know it isn't 83 years of luck.

The final point is that every parent wants their child to make it. Every parent thinks their child is brilliant. 30 years of attending Academy games has taught me not to buy into every parents perspective.

Like every club Academy we probably have a percentage of average players, average parents and average coaches. As long as our % is better than all the other clubs we will come out on top.

I think what the parent on this forum was saying is that there is room for improvement.

I think there always is.

The point I made earlier in the thread was that if our coaching was bad or even average - we wouldn't be in a position where we have Lingard, Keane x2 (even if Will got his career destroyed by injuries), Drinkwater,James, Brady, Henderson, Gomes, Williams, Greenwood, Rashford, McTominay, Garner, Levitt etc etc

I am not saying our coaches are brilliant - I don't know anything about that, but I can't believe it's possible to get so many quality players in such short amount of time if the coaching is average. If that is the case we must have a scouting department that is 10 times better than anyone else, and I don't Believe that either.

We can probably get a lot better - but we must be good even at coaching
 

khoazany

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Are they the group that beat Liverpool like 9-0 and city kept sending scouts to watch them every game? Think khoazany mentioned it years ago when they were U9s or something.
It were the next season U15s group (05-06 born). Tbf it's a quite physical group as well.
 

khoazany

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Probably this will be the first case that we sign back a youngster that moved to City from us in the past. We had a policy not to do that.
 

Mr. MUJAC

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Probably this will be the first case that we sign back a youngster that moved to City from us in the past. We had a policy not to do that.
Great post thanks. 95% agree with what you’re saying.

The issue is that the statistics will inevitably lag the current reality and I know City have openly been taking a lot of the best local talent in the last couple of years in the younger age groups. Most here will know that. I’m not questioning our past record but what may be about to come. It’s hard to compete with a club next door that effectively has the resources of a country.

Only having a handful of people move on to be scholars this year is unprecedented for us and hopefully is just a freak year but it does make me nervous.
It could happen. So the question is "is this an outlier of a year that happens once a decade, or the start of a new trend?"

Given City's introduction of young talent over the last three years...games in brackets, new players with asterix

2017/18 - Nmecha (3), Foden (10)
2018/19 - Muric?* (5), Garcia* (3), Poveda* (1), Foden (26), Nmecha (1)
2019/20 - Doyle* (3), Harwood-Bellis* (4), Foden (37), Garcia (19)

They also had Diaz, Iheanacho and Adarabioyo from previous recent groups.

versus ours

2017/18 - No new players
2018/19 - Garner (1), Chong (4), Greenwood (4)
2019/20 - Greenwood (47), Garner (6), Chong (11), Laird* (2), Mellor* (1), Williams* (33), Galbraith* (1), Bernard* (1), Levitt* (1), Ramazani* (1)

We also had Tuanzebe, McTominay, Pereira, Fosu-Mensah and Rashford from previous recent seasons with Lingard and Pogba from back in 2011.

So take away the Astana match as an outlier for us and over the last three seasons it's basically Foden and Garcia for City and Greenwood and Williams for United.

Not a lot to differentiate at all in that short time frame. There are always two considerations to take into account.

The first is what is coming? So let's see who City bring through over the next few years.

The second is what Academy players are already holding down places. If you have say excellent Academy products holding down places in the first team, then your system is working. We probably have four Academy products in that category in Rashford, McTominay and Pogba with Greenwood keeping Lingard out of the team.

City don't have any Academy players holding down first team places, with people hoping Foden will take over from Silva.

Someone mentioned above that our 15's are a good group this so looking forward to seeing some of them.
 

Redhalle

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The fact that this thread exists shows how the attitudes of the recruitment in the academy has changed in recent years. If you felt United wasn't good enough you were waved goodbye and that was that.
 

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This not a done deal then? Seeing him being linked to Rangers and Leipzig now too
I think it comes down to whether we agree a fee with City or not. I expect we would hardly even be willing to enter a conversation with them on youth matters so it will likely go to tribunal for them to decide a fee. That would be my take on it - not sure how long or in what way you have to negotiate before you can go to a tribunal.
 

Bigsid

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It were the next season U15s group (05-06 born). Tbf it's a quite physical group as well.
Uniteds 15s don't have one player internationally do they? Know they are a big side but that's not always best way of developing players longer term.16s seem to have better individual prospects. Heard from coach at club Uniteds 13s next season very good and haven't lost in years.
 

Beaucoup

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Uniteds 15s don't have one player internationally do they? Know they are a big side but that's not always best way of developing players longer term.16s seem to have better individual prospects. Heard from coach at club Uniteds 13s next season very good and haven't lost in years.
I wouldn't read too much into playing internationally at this age, only half of last years 14's would have been eligible to play last season as 05 births, they would also be competing with the older lads, plus England scouts tend to watch the under 15 age group, so only the 14's playing up would get noticed, which Utd don't tend to do much anymore. That age groups 06 born players will be looked at this year.

This years 16's do have some good prospects, however, they also only have a couple of players that get a regular call up. I've also watched last years 12's and they do have some talented players, but they also have some big units as well, which obviously is a benefit at that age as far as results are concerned.

You shouldn't judge the quality of players coming through based on a complete age group, every group will have a number of very good players, a couple of stand-out talents, a few early developers...etc
 
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Bigsid

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All fair points Beaucoup. Last I heard Rangers in pole position after offering silly money. United dithering.
 

jb8521

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Uniteds 15s don't have one player internationally do they? Know they are a big side but that's not always best way of developing players longer term.16s seem to have better individual prospects. Heard from coach at club Uniteds 13s next season very good and haven't lost in years.
Balogun, Fredrickson & Myles (club u14) have all been at training camps but I think Myles is the only that's actually played in games. Some surprising absences as well such as Mainoo & Curley
 

In Rainbows

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I wouldn't read too much into playing internationally at this age, only half of last years 14's would have been eligible to play last season as 05 births, they would also be competing with the older lads, plus England scouts tend to watch the under 15 age group, so only the 14's playing up would get noticed, which Utd don't tend to do much anymore. That age groups 06 born players will be looked at this year.

This years 16's do have some good prospects, however, they also only have a couple of players that get a regular call up. I've also watched last years 12's and they do have some talented players, but they also have some big units as well, which obviously is a benefit at that age as far as results are concerned.

You shouldn't judge the quality of players coming through based on a complete age group, every group will have a number of very good players, a couple of stand-out talents, a few early developers...etc
McCallister was huge compared to the 07s when he competed in the 2019 MIC tournament. And he's not really all that huge compared to the rest of the 06s, they're all of a similar size apart from like Missin and 1-3 others.
 

Bigsid

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McCallister was huge compared to the 07s when he competed in the 2019 MIC tournament. And he's not really all that huge compared to the rest of the 06s, they're all of a similar size apart from like Missin and 1-3 others.
He was playing a year down though eh? 06s worst year group at United surely looking at results in tournaments. Mind you we generally struggle across board internationally compared to other clubs. Guess it's about producing individuals ultimately.
 

In Rainbows

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He was playing a year down though eh? 06s worst year group at United surely looking at results in tournaments. Mind you we generally struggle across board internationally compared to other clubs. Guess it's about producing individuals ultimately.
Yeah he was playing down a year, but it just shows what a difference a year makes (and I rate Finley). Yes, the 06s did get trounced a lot internationally, but I thought they looked better in the Mumbai Cup a few months ago. I think it just shows you that once the coaches start to teach the kids to be more tactically aware as opposed to letting them just play with their style, the whole group looks better in those tournaments. Mind you, this was compared to Chelsea and Southampton as they were the only opposition that really could compete.
 

Beaucoup

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Yeah he was playing down a year, but it just shows what a difference a year makes (and I rate Finley). Yes, the 06s did get trounced a lot internationally, but I thought they looked better in the Mumbai Cup a few months ago. I think it just shows you that once the coaches start to teach the kids to be more tactically aware as opposed to letting them just play with their style, the whole group looks better in those tournaments. Mind you, this was compared to Chelsea and Southampton as they were the only opposition that really could compete.
The Mumbai Cup wasn't the 06 age group, it was the U14's. The 06's are a weak group as a whole, but i'm also lead to believe it contains some extremely talented individuals, like most year groups at the Academy.
 

khoazany

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Yeah he was playing down a year, but it just shows what a difference a year makes (and I rate Finley). Yes, the 06s did get trounced a lot internationally, but I thought they looked better in the Mumbai Cup a few months ago. I think it just shows you that once the coaches start to teach the kids to be more tactically aware as opposed to letting them just play with their style, the whole group looks better in those tournaments. Mind you, this was compared to Chelsea and Southampton as they were the only opposition that really could compete.
It wasn't the 2006 at Mumbai Cup. Only McAllister, Missin, Wheatley and Berry are 06s there I think. The rest are all late 05s.
 

In Rainbows

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It wasn't the 2006 at Mumbai Cup. Only McAllister, Missin, Wheatley and Berry are 06s there I think. The rest are all late 05s.
Yeah that's what I figured, a mixed group although the main players in those youth tournaments where they got trounced heavily featured Wheatley, Jones, Berry, and Missin who were featured in Mumbai Cup too. Anyways, the point is that it feels like at younger ages they're less tactically aware on purpose as already expressed here. That and size difference Mcallister had with the 07s like Edwards, Baumann, and Lacey.