Manchester City 'just buy trophies' and 'shut the door on youth system', according to ex-Manchester United defender Mikael Silvestre

Silvestre also believes City will never be as popular as United

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The Independent Football

Former Manchester United defender Mikael Silvestre believes that Manchester City ‘just buy trophies’ and by spending millions on big name stars are neglecting their youth system.

The outburst comes off the back of one the worst ever seasons for United while their city neighbours lifted the Premier League trophy for the second time in three years.

Since 2008, Sheikh Mansour’s millions of pounds in investment as won the club trophies and titles but Silvestre believes that is not right for the game.

Silvestre told Press Association Sport: "They just buy trophies. United are all about growing players. City buy multiple stars and shut the door to the youth system.

"United have more courage. They are a club with a family spirit. Those who come through the ranks absorb the mentality, the history of the club so they show the heritage in their performances."

Silvestre played over 360 times for United during a nine year career at Old Trafford and won the Premier League crown five times. He was signed for £4million from Inter Milan in 1999.

The defender, now 36-years-old and playing for the Portland Timbers, says that this excessive spending is a hindrance to City’s youth players.

He also reckons that his former club will always been the bigger name on a global scale.

Talking about City’s worldwide brand, he said: "The way they do their business, it doesn't get people to support them.

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"They might win trophies here and there but they won't gain support.

"I have been travelling a lot for United in the last six months, I have been to Asia, and the support [for United] there is unbelievable and honestly City is nowhere near that."