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Vincent Kompany advises young English talent to go abroad

Manchester City captain signed a new contract on Wednesday

Vincent Kompany has made the startling prediction that the England team will reach a World Cup final in the next 16 years, but only if the nation's young players accept that they must move abroad for their early development.

The Manchester City captain signed a new five-year contract at the club today, becoming the latest of the Premier League champions’ high-profile players, including David Silva, Samir Nasri and Yaya Toure to commit their futures. Speaking at the launch of the Premier League’s £10.5m fund for primary school sport, Kompany addressed the accusation from his former team-mate Jack Rodwell that young English players should not sign for the club.

“It is not just opportunity. It is also education … what has made my development is not the fact that I started in the Premier League at 17 or 18 because it is not realistic. It is the fact that I started at Anderlecht at 17 and played Champions League at 17 and moved on when I was 20.

“That made a difference for players like me, Eden Hazard, Jan Vertonghen, Moussa Dembele, all the players in my national team. We started at smaller clubs. If you think about England what needs to change is the mindset. English players should accept at a younger age to take experience abroad or in leagues where it is easier to play, where it is less demanding either physically or when it comes to results. It is as simple as that.


“I look at it in a more rational way. They Germany have just done the basics right like they did in France after their elimination in the 1994 World Cup qualifiers. They’ve gone back to their roots … they put in the necessary funding into it. All of a sudden, because it is a big country they have such a huge number of young players coming through with quality. It is as simple as that.

“People talk about the great facilities in England but they’ve only been here for two to three years. You still have to wait. England will play a World Cup final in the next four competitions for the simple reason that no other country has the resources to put that much into facilities. The wealthy ownerships of the clubs help and at the same time coaches are being brought in from countries where they have succeeded, whether it is Germany, France, Spain or Holland, teaching the locals here. It will make English football evolve.

“What happened was very simple. You (England) rest on your laurels a little bit because you have had success for so long, and then you get a slap like the last World Cup and all of a sudden it makes you progress 10 years. It’s a good recovering cycle. It was a very important slap, a good one, one that will make English players reach another level.”