Pep Guardiola has praised years worth of investment and hard work at the City Football Academy, which is now starting to pay off.
17-year-old local boy Phil Foden made his professional debut for Manchester City on Tuesday night against Feyenoord, while Brahim Diaz, 18, who made his debut against Swansea City in the League Cup last year, enjoyed his first minutes on the Etihad turf.
Speaking after the game, Guardiola complimented the Academy and hinted at more game time to come for Foden and Brahim.
“A big congratulations to our Academy. The Club should be so proud,” Guardiola said. “We had a 17 and 18-year-old making an appearance in Champions League and had the result been more comfortable, they would have played more minutes.
“They are young talents. Our squad is not too big. We will see what happens in the next few games. Hopefully they can stay for a long time and help us.
“For the Academy and the way they work with them, they deserve the credit – the managers, people, the teammates. They are responsible for them making their first appearance in this competition.”
Foden spoke to City Watch back in April and told us, “I hope to become a regular player in the first team in the next couple of years. That is my aim, and just to keep working hard and improving.”
On Tuesday night, the young Manchester City fan took a big step forward in achieving his ambition and received an ovation worthy of a local boy from the joyous Etihad faithful.
City legend Paul Dickov also commented on the two Etihad debutants, saying the conveyor belt from the talent-filled City Football Academy has now started.
— Paul Dickov (@OfficialPDickov) November 21, 2017
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