Man United hero looks for English Stars

12 July 2013 08:32
The demand for success is crippling and so short term. Gary Neville has expressed his thoughts on the emergence of young english players in the Premier League. He states that the pressure and absolute demand that exists within every club for winning and success is  suppressing young English players establishing themselves in the Premier League

The Old Trafford legend, now part of of Roy Hodgson’s coaching staff as well as an insightful television pundit was a member of the famous ‘Fergies Fledgelings’ an exceptional Manchester United youth team that also produced his brother Phil, David Beckham, Paul Scholes, Ryan Giggs and Nicky Butt.

But he is convinced that there has been a paradigm shift in attitudes since that era played out. In contemporary elite football, the emergence of English/British based talent in the ‘Fergie’s Fledglings’ or ‘Busby Babes’ manner is unheard of.

 Being Gary, he offers an explanation “You can’t be definite on this, no one can, but my gut feeling is we’ve maybe reached a tipping point where the pathways are now being blocked,” Neville was speaking to the Guardian.

“I always felt the cream would rise to the top. I’ve always believed that, if you are good enough, you will get the opportunities. We were always told that as kids. But I’m not quite so sure any more.

“I just think, at this moment, we are in danger of everything becoming too immediate, too fast, too instant. You can’t blame the owners for wanting instant success because they have spent a lot of money and want to make sure they get as much success as they can.


Tellingly, and ominously (for young British talent) he feels that  “It’s not the managers’ fault: everyone I speak to on coaching courses wants to work for the long term, to build something over a period of years as Sir Alex Ferguson did at Manchester United. But 63 of the 92 league clubs changed their manager last season, so they’re not getting enough time.”

Neville declares that a clubs stature locally and nationally is paramount to it’s identity, and British players are an integral part of that. Nevillle points to the pinnacle of European football to prove that the feel, charisma and identity of a club blooded and flooded with it’s own produce is pretty special.

He continued: “As an Englishman, every time you suggest you want more English or British players you are accused of being xenophobic (Fear of strangers/foreigners). Well, why? It is nice to see local people coming through and playing for the club they have grown up supporting. Barcelona have seven or eight players who have come through their academy. It is a great story.”

As we have come to expect of the pundit Neville, he qualifies his statements with proof and historical logic“I always look at the very best teams and they have a core of players who believe in that club and who have grown up with that club: the great Milan sides; Ajax if you look back; the Barcelona team we see now; the current Bayern Munich team have got three or four homegrown players; and of course United who, over the years, have been the most dominant club in the Premier League.”

Source: United Mad


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