City's next generation have fair way to go

Under-19s glimpse gulf in standard with Barcelona as Marwood looks to the future

Manchester City privately acknowledge that there remains a huge gulf between their academy system and that of Barcelona, and that their recruitment and development of Under-19s must improve dramatically if they are to sustain a position at the top of the game.

City's football administrator, Brian Marwood, watched the club's Elite Development Squad (EDS) side lose 4-1 in Barcelona in the NextGen European Under-19s tournament last night, only too aware that the difference in standard at that level is still vast. City went into the match as the only club in the 16-strong NextGen competition yet to register a point.

City have been determined to give young players experience on the continental stage and develop the technical passing game which Marwood sees as the club's future, rather than seek victories at all cost. Denis Suarez, Abdul Razak and Karim Rekik look like future talents for the City first-team, though the club need more. All three players are potentially integral to City's attempt to remain as competitive in Europe five years from now in an era of Financial Fair Play as they are now. They are a win away from the Champions League knockout stage after the 3-0 victory in Villarreal on Wednesday night.

Yaya Touré, who had never scored twice in one game before his two fine finishes in El Madrigal, warned afterwards that there is a gulf between City and the Catalans. "Of course there is a difference," he said. "Barcelona has been a big club for a long time. If Manchester City want to be a club like that we have to win some Premier Leagues, maybe some Champions Leagues to be like them. They are the top team in the world. We still have a long way to go. We have to continue to improve."

Striker Luca Scapuzzi and the manager's son, Andreas Mancini, have been sent out on loan to Oldham Athletic.

Club take advice on avoiding Napoli 'Ultras'

Manchester City will seek advice from Liverpool, Manchester United and Bayern Munich as they attempt to prevent serious injury to fans attending the vital Champions League tie at Napoli next month.

Liverpool supporters were hunted down by Napoli fans and three hospitalised with stab wounds ahead of their Europa League tie at Stadio San Paolo last season and six Bayern fans were also stabbed as the sides met in Italy last month.

With up to 3,000 City fans intending to travel for a game that could see Roberto Mancini's side qualify for the Champions League group stage on 22 November, City intend to publish detailed advice for fans to keep them from coming to serious harm from the Serie A side's Ultras.

City's security staff have already made a reconnaissance mission and have also spoken to United, in an attempt to draw on their vast experience in difficult Italian locations, especially Rome. A central fan embassy, providing supporters with a contact point, is likely to form a part of preparations for Napoli, as will detailed approach routes to and from the stadium for supporters. A Football Association observer will also be on the trip, as a matter of routine.

Liverpool's trip last year ended with one fan in hospital with injuries to his buttocks and thighs, and another with wounds to his head. The men were part of a group that had been heading back to their hotel on the night before the game when they realised they were being followed. A chase ensued but they were caught at the corner of Garibaldi Street and Piazza Garibaldi, areas which supporters will be encouraged to be wary of. The fans, attacked with sticks and iron bars, tried to take refuge in a hotel but its door was closed.

Ian Herbert

Suggested Topics
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

The saffron censorship that governs India: Why national pride and religious sentiment trump freedom of expression

The saffron censorship that governs India

Zareer Masani reveals why national pride and religious sentiment trump freedom of expression
Prince Charles' 'black spider' letters to be published 'within weeks'

Prince Charles' 'black spider' letters to be published 'within weeks'

Supreme Court rules Dominic Grieve's ministerial veto was invalid
Distressed Zayn Malik fans are cutting themselves - how did fandom get so dark?

How did fandom get so dark?

Grief over Zayn Malik's exit from One Direction seemed amusing until stories of mass 'cutting' emerged. Experts tell Gillian Orr the distress is real, and the girls need support
The galaxy collisions that shed light on unseen parallel Universe

The cosmic collisions that have shed light on unseen parallel Universe

Dark matter study gives scientists insight into mystery of space
The Swedes are adding a gender-neutral pronoun to their dictionary

Swedes introduce gender-neutral pronoun

Why, asks Simon Usborne, must English still struggle awkwardly with the likes of 's/he' and 'they'?
Disney's mega money-making formula: 'Human' remakes of cartoon classics are part of a lucrative, long-term creative plan

Disney's mega money-making formula

'Human' remakes of cartoon classics are part of a lucrative, long-term creative plan
Lobster has gone mainstream with supermarket bargains for £10 or less - but is it any good?

Lobster has gone mainstream

Anthea Gerrie, raised on meaty specimens from the waters around Maine, reveals how to cook up an affordable feast
Easter 2015: 14 best decorations

14 best Easter decorations

Get into the Easter spirit with our pick of accessories, ornaments and tableware
Paul Scholes column: Gareth Bale would be a perfect fit at Manchester United and could turn them into serious title contenders next season

Paul Scholes column

Gareth Bale would be a perfect fit at Manchester United and could turn them into serious title contenders next season
Inside the Kansas greenhouses where Monsanto is 'playing God' with the future of the planet

The future of GM

The greenhouses where Monsanto 'plays God' with the future of the planet
Britain's mild winters could be numbered: why global warming is leaving UK chillier

Britain's mild winters could be numbered

Gulf Stream is slowing down faster than ever, scientists say
Government gives £250,000 to Independent appeal

Government gives £250,000 to Independent appeal

Donation brings total raised by Homeless Veterans campaign to at least £1.25m
Oh dear, the most borrowed book at Bank of England library doesn't inspire confidence

The most borrowed book at Bank of England library? Oh dear

The book's fifth edition is used for Edexcel exams
Cowslips vs honeysuckle: The hunt for the UK’s favourite wildflower

Cowslips vs honeysuckle

It's the hunt for UK’s favourite wildflower
Child abuse scandal: Did a botched blackmail attempt by South African intelligence help Cyril Smith escape justice?

Did a botched blackmail attempt help Cyril Smith escape justice?

A fresh twist reveals the Liberal MP was targeted by the notorious South African intelligence agency Boss