Pep Guardiola says Manchester City's expectations make it hard to play young talent
Last Updated: 06/10/19 2:09pm
Pep Guardiola says the expectation to win silverware at Manchester City is a major factor behind the lack of young talent making the breakthrough at the Premier League champions.
Phil Foden is the only Manchester City academy product to feature in the Premier League for the first team, playing just 10 minutes.
Guardiola apologised to Foden in midweek for the 19-year-old's lack of minutes after his cameo goal in the 2-0 Champions League win against Dinamo Zagreb.
City opened their multi-million academy in 2014 but have struggled to rival Chelsea, who have seen youth products Tammy Abraham, Mason Mount and Fikayo Tomori all flourish in the first team since they were put under a two-window transfer embargo earlier this year.
Phil Foden's minutes this season
|Champions League||4 mins|
|Premier League||10 mins|
|Carabao Cup||90 mins|
|Community Shield||1 min|
Asked why in recent years City have not seen academy products thrive in the first team, Guardiola said: "Basically these teams [like Manchester City] all need to win titles and prizes.
"The process for the young players needs time and the best way is step-by-step for the players that we have.
The young players can be a help to the others but to have the basis on the young [players] is not possible.
"But the demand for the club, not [necessarily] winning the Champions League but being there all the time in all competitions, and for that it needs [more experienced] players that we have.
"The talent is there, when they are talented they will play. But at the same time we have to compete every single day to fight with the best teams in England and Europe.
"We need David Silva's, Kevin de Bruyne's, Sergio Aguero's and Fernandinho's - all these type of players."
Academy products Taylor Harwood-Bellis, who made his first-team debut, Eric Garcia and Adrian Bernabe all featured in the 3-0 win at Preston in the Carabao Cup third round last month.
"With the young players you cannot do it," Guardiola added.
"The young players can be a help to the others but to have the basis on the young [players] is not possible."
Guardiola also dismissed the assertion that because of Foden's battle for game-time other young players could be put off joining City.
Pep: No reason for concern amid Liverpool run
City, who host Wolves on Sunday, trail league leaders Liverpool by five points ahead of the final round of fixtures before the latest international break and Guardiola is unperturbed by their rivals' perfect start to the domestic season.
Jurgen Klopp's side face Leicester and Manchester United either side of the break from league commitments before back-to-back matches against Tottenham and Liverpool follow.
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"It's not about being concerned. They have tough fixtures but we have tough fixtures too," said Guardiola, whose side have comparatively a more favourable run of games before City visit Liverpool on November 10.
"It is not about them. I don't even know the schedule of Liverpool's games. I know my schedule quite well - the next month and a half I know every game I have ahead.
"If they are on this run and [continue] winning, I will clap and congratulate them.
"All we can do is try to maintain our level to try to play better every game and we will see what happens. But we are in the first days of October.
"There are a lot of games to play, a lot of competitions, different situations, handling good and bad moments."