Bruce bemoans 'monster' league

12 July 2010 03:09
Sunderland boss Steve Bruce has bemoaned the lack of home-grown talent breaking through into the "monster" the Premier League has become.

As the inquest over England's disastrous World Cup campaign gets into full swing and questions are asked about where the next generation of international stars will come from, Bruce is not optimistic for the future.

He was able to blood teenager midfielder Jordan Henderson last season, and has high hopes for Martyn Waghorn and Jack Colback, who thrived on loan at Championship Leicester and Ipswich respectively last season.

However, he knows that the Premier League presents an entirely different challenge, and he is concerned about the lack of talent emerging from the ranks around the country.

Bruce said: "Waghorn and Colback, this is a big year for them. They will definitely make a living in the game, they have proved that playing in the Championship.

"But as we know, the Premier League is a hugely different ball game, and that's where the problem is.

"We have created a monster with this Premier League. It's a fantastic league, a very good league, but to actually bring people through, it has been difficult.

"We are a victim of our own success in the Premier League. Me, for example, as a manager, I am scouring South America or Europe or whatever because we need them today to go and play.

"I would love to go and sign a 20-year-old from Bury or Rochdale or anywhere, I would love to sign a young English player.

"But unfortunately, we are not producing them and there have to be big questions asked of why, in our society, we are not producing them when we have got something like 42, 43 Academies in this country from eight to 16.

"We are simply not producing the quality of player that we used to produce. That's the debate."

Bruce was a player at Manchester United as Sir Alex Ferguson's golden generation of Ryan Giggs, David Beckham, Paul Scholes, Nicky Butt and the Neville brothers broke through to make it all the way to the top.

The Sunderland boss admits it was a "fluke" to get so many top-class players through in such a short space of time, and believes the problem could in part lie in the changing nature of today's society.

He said: "We produced them [at United], but I don't think we are producing them like we used to.

"I'll give you an example: when do you see kids playing in a field any more with two jumpers down and playing with a football? You never see it.

"They are at home with computers, iPods, iPhones, g-pods or whatever they call them, and the kids don't play anymore.

"That, to me, is one of the reasons as well. There are a whole load of issues, but we are certainly not producing footballers like we used to."

In the short-term, Bruce is continuing his search for new recruits, and is hopeful of adding further signings.

United midfielder Michael Carrick is not on his wish-list despite the departure of skipper Lorik Cana, and he is currently concentrating on defenders with loan deals for John Mensah and Alan Hutton having ended.

The Black Cats remain in talks with Mensah's club Lyon over a deal, although the Ghana international's injury history remains a major stumbling block.

Bruce said: "If at all possible, I would love to bring him back, but I will see what develops and see if Lyon want to play ball in that respect."

In the meantime, he, like several of his counterparts, is awaiting an answer from vastly experienced former Arsenal defender Sol Campbell after talks last week.

Bruce said: "He [Campbell] is getting married next week and then off on honeymoon, and I would think he would give an answer to all the respective clubs when he comes back.

"In the meantime because of the indecision, I am still looking to see what's out there."

Meanwhile, Sunderland's bid to sign Argentinian full-back Marcos Angeleri is being held up by the player's wait for an Italian passport, for which he qualifies through his father.

Source: Team_Talk