Manchester City and Chelsea, two models facing each other

While the 'citizen' team like to develop the youngsters in their U-23 team, at Stamford Bridge they tend to opt for multiple transfers.

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When the winter market clock was about to run out of sand, it was time to make decisions and these did not only involve players established in the elite. The Odegaard, Dembélé, Milik and company take the headlines, but there are many young people (even more than the Norwegian from Madrid) with enough talent to enjoy a greater minute than they enjoy. Mainly in the big ones in Europe. But there is a quarry whose policy collides head-on with a resource as common as transfer and that is Manchester City.

The citizen school is populated by avid soccer players of the highest level, but everything indicated, as it has been, that budding stars like Tommy Doyle (19 years old) or Taylor Harwood-Bellis (18) would remain in limbo between the first team and the campus sub-23. In 'The Athletic' they echo this trend repeated since Guardiola landed at the Etihad and shed light on it. While other teams like to give up their most promising players who move in the range 17-20 years, in the blue zone of Manchester it is common for promises to take off between training sessions with the majors, the U23 and the minutes that Pep gives them.

As this media well points out, Santpedor's is in love with tactical work and change of position, training that requires a large number of footballers. In this way, the vast majority of the youngsters from the U-23 and U-18 squads share hours of practice with their 'older brothers', the De Bruyne, Sterling, Agüero and company. They may not always be part of the calls afterwards, but that is what the first citizen branch is for, so that on weekends they maintain the rhythm of competition.Massive workouts

The best get tough on their idols, see the case of Phil Foden. The 'Iniesta de Stockport' has had to burn through many stages and warm up the bench, despite the fact that his level ventured that a loan would earn him more professional playing time. However, the midfielder, following a policy that is very reminiscent of that of Barça's Masía, has endured until becoming one of the greatest English promises of the moment, in addition to being the team's top scorer this season, alongside Sterling and Gundogan, with nine goals.

By Doyle (midfielder, six first-team games) and Harwood-Bellis (center-back, eight games), two of the brightest diamonds to come out of the skyblue school, the offers have also arrived. However, the boys have not packed their bags and less in a situation like the current one. COVID-19 has compressed the calendar greatly and if under normal conditions Guardiola likes to give opportunities to young people, in campaigns like this one, love is mixed with obligation.

Not all cases are the same, as 'The Athletic' recalls, since footballers like Angeliño (today at Leipzig), Pablo Marí (Arsenal) or Manu García (Sporting de Gijón) had to leave Etihad in search of opportunities. Of course, in these three cases, as in many others, the target team was the Dutch Breda, a club that shares politics and style of play with City in order not to lose something that at the Etihad Campus they value very much, identity. Girona, which enjoys young people like Pablo Moreno (18 years old) or Yan Couto (18), is a Breda to the Spanish.

Gilmour vs. Foden

This quest for identity, curiously, is what they have failed to find at Chelsea over the years. Another great powerful quarry, but famous for using another type of method to extract the juice from its players, loans. Billy Gilmour is the best example and serves to compare models. The 19-year-old Scottish midfielder is one of Cobham's pretty boys, but has recently asked to be released on fears of ostracism. Eventually it will continue, but its intention is opposite to that shown by the talents of the citizen school. Finding a marked style of play has been Lampard's greatest duty in his time at the head of the team of which he is a legend, something that City has achieved. That is why he intended to 'Germanize' the 'blues', to give them a recognizable identity.

Cases like those of Lucas Piazón, recently disengaged from Chelsea definitively after seven assignments and just 161 minutes in the service of the team that signed him when he was targeting the 'Kaka of the future', illustrate this difference in approach to the stars in the making. We are not here to defend one model or another. On many occasions it will be the footballers themselves who, eager for timing, ask to leave, as Gilmour himself did days ago.

And not everyone is a frog, as happened to Piazón, Mason Mount or Tammy Abraham grew up in Derby County or Aston Villa to return to Stamford Bridge unencumbered, to give two examples. In fact, if we take a look at the number of players loaned by one or the other, it is quite similar (19 Chelsea and 16 City), but it is the process of formation of the stars that makes the difference in these two ways of proceeding. . Two models faced with Phil Foden and Billy Gilmour, standard bearers of the moment.



Photos from as.com
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