Wenger calls for patience
By Carla Hilton
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Arsene Wenger asks for patience as he bids to bring young English talent to the surface.
Arsene Wenger has asked for patience as he bids to bring young English talent to the surface in the Arsenal youth ranks.
The Gunners have been subject to strong criticism for an over-emphasis on developing young players form overseas rather than concentrating on home-grown talent.
Defender Justin Hoyte, 22, is the only English graduate from the London Colney training ground to have gained first team football this season.
Mark Randall and Matthew Connolly are the only other youngsters to have gained experience in the Carling Cup.
Wenger, who's Arsenal squad travel to Holland for Tuesday's UEFA Champions League tie against PSV Eindhoven, has been a big fan of the methods employed in Dutch football, with the 'Ajax model' bringing a period of sustained success.
And the Gunners boss was hoping to bring a similar method to the club when he arrived in North-London a decade ago.
"I have a lot of respect for what
"What I try to do is that on an international level.
"When I started this work I thought I would produce 60 per cent of English players and 40 per cent of overseas players.
"However, it ended up with 80 per cent of foreign players and 20 per cent English players, because I did not find enough quality here."
But Wenger insists more home-grown quality is to come, adding: "What you have that is amazing is now we have the quality in the Under 16s, Under 14s in
"You have the talent - but you must give them the education.
"A good education improves the level of the normal player. The genius, you cannot decide that because that comes out like a George Best every 20 years, but the real basic level is down to education."
Several players who have left the club are now playing regular first-team football, including David Bentley and
Speaking of Steve Sidwell, he added: "At the time when I let Sidwell go, he had [Patrick] Viera and [Emanuel] Petit in front of him, also guys like Edu, Gilberto.
"I knew when I let him go he would be a Premier League player - and I told him.
"I am not surprised with his progress - he has improved because he plays. He has been educated here - but to keep him here without playing is useless.
"That is why people accuse us of not doing enough for
"They forget they will educate plenty of players that will go somewhere else and play and have been educated here and become contenders to play for