English Premiership

Guardiola to give City academy players a chance

2017-03-08 13:36
Leroy Sane (Getty Images)

Cape Town - Pep Guardiola hopes to be able to promote a number of Manchester City academy graduates into his squad as he says English players are too expensive to buy.

The former Barcelona and Bayern Munich manager enjoys utilising players local to the league that he is coaching in as they offer something "special".

He did this to great effect in La Liga and to some extent in the Bundesliga, but is finding the practice prohibitive in the English Premier League.

City centre-back John Stones cost the club £47.5m from Everton, in a squad that has only five English players - including, Raheem Sterling, Fabian Delph, Tosin Adarabioyo and Angus Gunn, along with Joe Hart, who is on loan at Torino.

But the last academy player to really make a name for himself at the club was Micah Richards.

Speaking ahead of his side's league match with Stoke City on Wednesday, Guardiola said: "I would like to have English players, believe me, but they are so expensive.

"I would like to play with English players. When I was in Barcelona I liked to play with locals because they feel something special, but sometimes it is not possible."

He added: "With me or without me - hopefully with me - I would like to enjoy these four or five guys who are growing, and play with them.

"That is why the club has worked for a long period with the academy, thinking about the next years."

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