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Discussion in 'Player Performances' started by Bill, 21 Jul 2017.
To be honest I wouldn't like to say how much to be honest.
Question for long time followers of Pep like Andrew K...
How likely do you think that Pep is to start Phil in a meaningful game?
Does Pep take chances on young talent?
I honestly don't know - would love to read some feedback.
Foden has shown some real ability pre-season, but our team is loaded - can he break into the side at least as a rotation player? And will Pep trust someone so young?
I'm a big fan of Foden and Diaz. The answer for the first question is yes, if you see League Cup as a meaningful competition :).
If we use Barcelona's youth system of 2000-2010 period as an example, most talented La Masia midfielders were introduced into the first team at 18-19 yo but became permanent starters only at 20-22, being mature physically.
Xavi: 1998 - debut under LVG (18 yo) and 26 games for the first team, 1999 - starter under LVG (Pep, his main competitor, was injured)
Iniesta: 2002 - debut under LVG (18 yo), 2004 - rotation/sub player under LVG
Thiago: 2009 - debut under Pep (18 yo), 2011 - rotation player under Pep
Busi: 2008 (20 yo) - debut/rotation player under Pep after a year at Barca B with Guardiola.
Of course there's always exceptions like Messi who was a starter at 18 yo, but he became a physical beast very early.
During the first introductory year youngsters in Spain usually play for first and reserve team simultaneously as the rules allow it.
I'm sure Guardiola percieves youngsters' development as one of the main targets, even if we're talking about short-term goals. Think the idea of having players with positional play in their veins is crucial for the current City/Sheik/Pep project. That's what Academy is about - teaching kids PP from grassroots, it's the only way to develop next Xavi (joined La Masia at 11 yo) or Iniesta (12 yo).
Pep likes young players as they're like a blank sheet, he said. Used youngsters at Barca a lot (besides Busi who he turned into a world's best pivot, and Thiago, there were also Cuenca, Tello, Jeffren, Pedro, J.Dos Santos, Bartra, Montoya etc. The majority played in meaningfull games, uncluding CL playoffs and Clasicos). But they were 20 yo at least, so have some patience.
Talking about this season, I'd expect several starts for Foden and Diaz in domestic cups, maybe sub appearances in the league while continuing to play in the EDS.
I wouldn't exclude a case in which Brahim and Foden are loaned out next summer to NAC Breda or Girona to get more experience of competitive football - the English youth system was repeatedly criticised by Guardiola. Though I personally hope that they'll stay and become rotation players in 2018-19, as you can see from examples such miracles are possible.
Besides tender age, there could be another obstacle for Foden: the unofficial squad heirarchy. Pep cannot prefer Foden to senior players in meaningful games. That's why I don't like the fact that we haven't managed to get rid of Delph, he could eat some of Foden's minutes this season. Hope we'll have more balanced squad next year.
Hi I know you didn't ask me but he'll play if Pep thinks he's good enough.
It's an archaic thought of sorts but it's true.
It's harder to judge when because of both our team strength and the relative strength throughout the country.
Unlike in Spain and Germany, with Barcelona and Bayern Munich, our team isn't as strong (yet). Similarly, weaker sides in England play with a greater intensity and play a much more disruptive game than overseas.
This puts a lot more pressure on individuals in our games to perform well in their own right. As in it's much more difficult for the more senior players to support younger players.
That's why we often saw midfielders at fullback last season. Because even though they weren't natural fits they were much more used to the 'hustle and bustle' of the league and much less likely to be overwhelmed. With Foden specifically you can see an obvious problem, due to his tiny stature.
The good news is Pep will try and feature him and Diaz when possible. League cup games initially. Maybe a CL game if it's a dead rubber. They'll have to prove they have some fight in them when they can but you can be assured that if they prove themselves they'll be given a chance.
People like to jibe at Pep for not bringing youth through, but if Foden (or a similar calibre/stature player) was at either of his two previous clubs when he was then he'd feature a lot more. Pep does like promoting youth.
But for the reasons I stated above, it's just tough. Pep himself said that the lack of B teams makes the transition tougher than it already is (although Girona are helping us with that).
But if you're worried, remember Delph's success of last year. After Pep was forced into playing him he admitted he was wrong about him. He made it clear that if you're good enough you WILL play. And Delph did play. Until injury struck.
So with Foden don't expect too much right now. He is only 17 after all. But a couple injuries could change everything..
@Andrew___K and mccity
Thanks for your well-written insightful posts.
I hope Pep tries to use him as much as it's safe to this season, even in the league if we have a cushion and control of the game.
Foden has an advantage over Diaz(perhaps a little unfairly so) because he's a true City academy graduate and also a life long City fan, from the Greater Manchester area and Pep knows how much it would get under the press' skin if he was to bring through England's next "crack player" as they say in Spain... in City sky blue, our press would have to swallow their pride and sing his praises.
I consider Diaz ours too even though he did have 3 years at Malaga first, he's spent longer here and a larger chunk of his development was done at our academy I'd say. He will get his chances too in cup games(will be hard to see them both get PL game time), we're lucky to have them both.
Cheers for posting.
I don't think so because alot of those thoughts don't sound right.
1) Pep does not fancy Delph, he made one comment that Delph proved him wrong and we have never seen him again and probably wanted to sell him this summer, regardless of the injury or not.
2) Maybe he will play Diaz or Foden, or maybe not, last season Foden could have debut against Celtic in a dead rubber game... but Pep didn't play him. I don't have confidence in this regard either.
3) Imo the money Pep has gotten has changed him, he no longer needs to find the solutions within the current players or academy talent, we can just buy him the players he wants. There is a genuine worry of talented academy players leaving us.
4) If Pep needs youth players to go to a B Team so he can evaluate whether he can use him, then he isn't a very good manager at developing youth, he is depending on other clubs managers to do that, as Brendon has done with Roberts. Both Poch and Klopp have integrated young players into their squad and will continue to do so, look at Woodburn and Alexander Arnold's development at Liverpool, Woodburn has even been promoted to Wales 1st team because Klopp showed what he can do with the first team.
I want Foden and Diaz to succeed at City, but as you can tell from my points above, Pep does not give me the confidence that he is the manager to do that. Maybe the next one will be better.
Its unfortunate that his two appearences on the bench were tight games. He'll be on the bench again in the near future (probably not against Liverpool unless we have injuries). If we're 3-0 up after 60 mins he'll get his chance. He should also play at WBA
Hi thanks for taking the time to address my post, I can see where you're coming from but I have my obvious retorts..
Pep has never ever set out to bring young players through as a priority. His goal is to win games and have them play his way. It's always been as such. However if there are younger players who fit the bill then he's more than happy to play them. He doesn't care for age too much, but he does care for ability and reliability. As has been said, Pep likes young players for the fact they're easier to mould under his 'vision'. But they need to be ready. We've seen last season (with the fullbacks mainly) how damaging it can be to the way we play having 'passengers' in the team. It's the same for youth.
Like I said in my earlier post; that because of the physicality of the PL, there's even more pressure on each individual in our team to perform than in other leagues. Even in the 'easy' games. Pep is going to avoid playing youngsters unless he feels that they're really ready for the fight.
And that's why the Girona deal (amongst others) is so important. Because Girona can give them opportunities to play that City can't. There is too much pressure at City to take a chance. I don't know if you've ever seen a matchday thread on here, but if Pep played a kid and it backfired there'd be the opposite of sympathy. Let them play and develop there. Let them get used to senior football in a competitive league. Remove the risk of not knowing if they're going to make it at the top level by having them trial it out at Girona.