Finished 2-1. Much better performance in the second half. The first half was poor; there was no real pattern of play and organisation throughout the team was lacking. Gomes was more involved and played well when he dropped deeper and Bonnen was impressive. Burkhart showed a glimpse of his potential with a decent strike just before full time.
Hardly think that's an excuse. Rashford is a fully fledged member of the first team now. Fletcher left a while ago now. Wilson and Keane obviously being kept back for sale or loan deals. It wouldn't be so bad if there were a couple of prospects in the academy. I am fully aware that the only real objective of the lower levels is to prepare them for the first team but you only had to see the way the u21s celebrated winning their league to know winning is important. It's not like it's a new thing either. We have regularly played the likes of Powell and pereira up front. We have loads of players for behind the striker but few actual strikers. Bit of a rant I know but something I feel strongly about.
The academy has produced at least three strikers that are eligible to play at reserve level. The better players at that age need first team football. The club cannot stock pile with (sub-standard) players if others leave/go on loan. There will be weaknesses and strengths within a team in age group sports. In one year there might a batch of highly talented forwards. Two years later there might be a batch of highly talented defenders. These things tend to go in cycles. I don't understand your point about Fletcher leaving and Rashford; are you suggesting the club buys a replacement for the reserve team?
I am suggesting we should have at least two strikers in the academy. Apart from the kid that came on as sub on Saturday I don't even see one. I hardly think we could be accused of stock piling strikers at any level at our club. Surely a well run club should have a conveyor belt of players in all positions. Of course rashford jumping almost from academy to first team has thrown it out a bit but it still needs to be better organised.
Bohui and Burkart, who are both forwards joined the academy in the summer. I suspect Burkart will become a regular starter at U18s level once he has settled. Neither are ready for the reserve team. We might see Burkart play for the reserves in the second half of the season if things go well. Diedrick-Roberts is another forward at academy level, but he is currently injured.
The numbers in each position at reserve level will be short because of loans and injuries. The right structure/stronger competition at reserve level would reduce the number of loans.
Does any club have a conveyor belt of players in all positions?
I probably don't know about other clubs enough to comment on their structure. Truth be told I am not even sure I know enough about our club to comment on the structure. You make good points and defend the clubs structure very well. I just look at it and feel we are under staffed up front at most levels. Where as we have been over staffed at right back. I accept that you have cycles in terms of quality but less so in terms of numbers.