Manchester City’s Academy is responsible for our youth development at the club. Its staff is responsible for the education and footballing development of young players for the future.
The club’s first youth team was set up by Albert Alexander in the 1920s when they were known as the A Team (no not that one).
It wasn’t until 1951 however that the ‘A’ team would compete against reserve and youth teams of other clubs from the North West in what was called the Lancashire League.
The next development in the system came in 1955 when a second youth team, the ‘B’ team, made up of younger players than the ‘A’ team competed in Division Two of the Lancashire League.
The academy system as we know it today came about in 1997 and it is at this time that legendary boss Jim Cassell came to us from Oldham Athletic.
Through his experience and drive the club’s academy underwent a complete makeover and received official academy accreditation by the FA in 1998.
From that point we were able to compete in the elite FA Premier Youth League and the ‘A’ and ‘B’ teams were replaced by the Under 19’s and Under 17’s.
Today the academy is thriving with teams competing, from the age of nine up until the age of eighteen, to an elite level both in their domestic leagues and in international tournaments.
Over the past decade alone the Blues academy has produced a steady stream of professional footballers from pocket dynamos like Shaun Wright Phillips and Vladimir Weiss to boy mountains such as Micah Richards and Michael Johnson.
Since winning the 2008 FA Youth Cup the City academy has rightly received the public adoration it deserves culminating in another final appearance last term.
But the Blues have been producing young gems for almost a century now and whilst some burst onto the scene early, not all have been a hit.
Some have shown great signs of early promise like Lee Croft but in the end failed to make the grade in top flight football. Others have broken through but not looked the part at all and gone elsewhere to further their careers like Leon Mike and Chris Shuker.
The Blues have been producing top level talent for more than a decade however with many stars graduating under the old system albeit to varying levels of success.
Some were told they were not good enough, only to go on to other clubs before becoming top professionals like Neil Lennon, Paul Warhurst and Colin Hendry.
Even now in the Premiership City have over ten academy graduates plying their trade for City or other teams showing its pedigree and why top youngsters choose us over more traditionally more fashionable clubs academies.
Current City Graduates plying their trade
God’s own team
Shaun Wright Phillips
Joe Hart- Birmingham (loan)
Vald Weiss Bolton (loan)
Dickson Etuhu- Fulham
Wayne Hennessey- Wolves
Tyrone Mears – Burnley
Steven Jordan – Burnley
Daniel Sturridge – Chelsea
Glen Whelan – Stoke City
Kelvin Etuhu – Cardiff (loan)
Ched Evans – Sheffield United
Steven Elliott – Preston North End
Bradley Wright Phillips – Plymouth Argyle
Ishmael Miller – West Bromwich Albion
Lee Croft – Derby County
Joseph Barton – Newcastle United
Shaleum Logan -Tranmere Rovers (loan)
Chris Shuker – Tranmere Rovers
Kasper Schmeical – Notts Cotts
Terry Dunfield – Shrewsbury Town
Chris Killen – Celtic
Willow Flood – Celtic
FA Youth Cup: Wins 2
1985/86: Manchester City 3 – 1 Manchester United (1-1 and 2-0, 3-1 aggregate)
1 GK Steve Crompton,
2 DF Steve Mills, 3 DF Andy Hinchcliffe, 4 DF Ian Brightwell, 5 DF Steve Redmond (c)
6 MF Andy Thackeray, 7 MF David White, 8 MF Paul Moulden, 11 MF David Boyd
9 FW Paul Lake, 10 FW Ian Scott
Sub DF Steve Macauley
Manager Tony Book
2007–08: Manchester City v. Chelsea (1–1, 3–1)
3 April 2008
Chelsea 1 – 1 Manchester City
Referee: Peter Walton
Kakuta 66′ Sturridge 49′
16 April 2008
Manchester City 3 – 1 Chelsea
City of Manchester Stadium, Manchester
Referee: Peter Walton
Ball 86′ (pen) McGivern 6′ (og)
1 GK Greg Hartley
2 DF Dedryck Boyata 82′, 3 DF Ben Mee (c), 4 DF Kieran Trippier 90+5′, 5 DF Ryan McGivern
6 MF Andrew Tutte, 7 MF Vladimír Weiss, 8 MF Scott Kay, 11 MF Donal McDermott
9 FW David Ball, 10 FW Robbie Mak
GK Filip Mentel , MF Abdi Ibrahim 90+5′, MF Angelos Tsiaklis 82′, FW Alex Nimely-Tchuimeni, FW James Poole
(Daniel Sturridge played first leg)
Runners-up 4 times
1978/79: Millwall v. Manchester City (0-0 and 2-0)
1 GK Alex Williams
2 DF Gary Fitzgerald, 3 DF Dick Cunningham, 4 DF Nicky Reid, 5 DF Tommy Caton
6 MF Ross McGinn, MF McClure, 7 MF Leigh, 9 MF Clive Wilson
10ST Steve Kinsey, 11ST Kevin Glendon
1979/80: Aston Villa v. Manchester City (3-1, 0-1)1980
GK Alex Williams,
DF Andy May, DF Dick Cunningham , DF Gary Bennett , DF Tommy Caton
MF Ross McGinn, MF Keith Parkinson , MF Steve MacKenzie, MF Gary Bees,
ST Steve Kinsey, ST Clive Wilson
1988/89: Watford v. Man City (0-1, 2-0 aet)
1 GK Martyn Margetson
2 DF Neil Lennon, 3 DF John Willis , 4 DF Mark Peters , 5 DF Gerry Taggart
6 MF Mike Quigley, 7 MF Ian Thompstone, 10 MF Michael Hughes, 11 MF Michael Wallace
8 FW Ashley Ward , 9 FW Jason Hasford
Subs FW Mike Sheron, MF Colin Small
2005–06: Liverpool v. Manchester City (3–0, 0–2)
1 GK Laurence Matthewson
2 DF Curtis Obeng, 3 DF Shaleum Logan , 4 DF Sam Williamson , 5 DF Garry Breen
6 MF Ashley Williams, 7 MF Paul Marshall , 8 MF Michael Johnson, 10 MF Michael Hughes,9 MF Karl Moore, 11 MF Michael Wallace,
10 FW Kelvin Etuhu , 11 FW Daniel Sturridge
Subs GK David Vadon, DF Micah Richards, DF Michael Daly, MF Christian Mouritsen, FW Ched Evans, MF Clayton, S. Evans
Hall Of Fame
So who are the greatest academy players ever to be produced by the club. We at Vital and the5-1 Blog take a look at the Top 10 ever to play for the first team (sorry Ryan) and has taken into account the following criteria for the ratings.
Games played for the first team
Key games for City
TO BE CONT…
Blues Academy Part I