• TJ

Top Five: Manchester City's next big Academy talents

Manchester City’s academy added yet another piece of silverware to their ever-expanding trophy haul on Wednesday night, after an emphatic 6-0 demolition of Tottenham at Loughborough University in the U17 Premier League Cup Final.

The Blues scored 22 goals across the six games on their way to securing the title making the City Football Academy the current holders of the PL2, the U18 PL, the U18 PL Cup, and the U17 PL Cup, the first club to ever achieve such a feat. The goals on the night came through Dan Ogwuru, Carlos Borges and two goals each for Josh Adam and substitute Will Dickson.


As the Academy continues to grow under the watchful eye of Jason Wilcox, we take a look at the next five academy talents that we believe will be knocking on the first team manager's door sooner rather than later.

 

Carlos Borges


Position: Left Wing

Preferred Foot: Left

Age: 17

Height: 5ft 6in


Carlos Borges, or CB as his teammates like to call him, is a 17-year-old winger who moved from the Sporting academy in Portugal to join up with City at the age of 10. During his time in Manchester, he has been identified as a rapid winger, developed in the mould of Leroy Sane, with an eye for goal and causing havoc in the final third.

Borges ended last season as the U18s Player of the Year after a remarkable tally of 12 goals and 18 assists in 21 appearances across the U18 PL. Only 16 years old for almost the whole season, the winger broke the all-time assist record at this level and scored the title-winning goal away to Burnley on the last day of the season.


This campaign has not been so easy for Borges, he struggled with injury for the first half of the season and is only now really beginning to get into his stride. Only 1 goal in 10 PL2 appearances but 4 goals and 3 assists in this season's U18 PL shows us that he is still learning and still bridging the gap to Brian Barry-Murphy’s side. We predict exciting things over these next few years for this electric, dynamic, and prolific forward.

Photo courtesy of Instagram: @carlos.forbs
 

Adedire Mebude


Position: Right Wing

Preferred Foot: Right

Age: 17

Height: 5ft 10in


Joined from Rangers in the summer of 2020, Mebude started slowly and didn’t feature heavily in his first season. But the Scottish born winger has been on fire for the U18s this season. He’s caught the eye with his fancy flicks and tricks across the season but has also been banging in the goals. In his 14 U18 PL appearances this season, he has found the net 9 times while also setting up an opponent on 12 occasions. The attacker has speed, end product and is a real bag of tricks. Fond of stepovers and body feints, Mebude loves bamboozling defenders and has even pulled out the ‘Bolasie Swipe’ this season.

Having already been pictured in first-team training sessions this year, Mebude is certainly a player to keep an eye on across the upcoming years.

Photo courtesy of Instagram: @diremebude
 

Rico Lewis


Position: Right Back

Preferred Foot: Right

Age: 17

Height: 5ft 8in


Lewis has progressed right through every age group at City, joining as an 8-year-old and featuring for the EDS and U18s this season. The fullback is the current captain of the U18s and lifted the trophy on Wednesday as the U17s captain after a superb display grabbing 2 assists.


Lewis is the all-round footballer, the perfect quality for a Pep Guardiola fullback. Captaining every City team he’s been in, and the England U18 captain on recent appearances, he’s is a natural-born leader.

He is an exceptional footballer and has that same quality that Joao Cancelo possesses of being a fullback with the final third ability of a winger. Lewis also has superb defensive awareness and recovery speed in his locker to match. He is capable of playing on either side of the back four and can go on the overlap or invert into the midfield with ease.


A young debutant at every level, 14 years old for his England U16 debut, 15 years old for his U18 debut, 16 years old for his England U18 debut and EDS debut, could we see an early first appearance for the senior team in the future for Rico Lewis?

Photo courtesy of Instagram: @rico.lewis
 

Micah Hamilton


Position: Attacking Midfield

Preferred Foot: Right

Age: 18

Height: 5ft 9in


Hamilton joined the CFA as an Under-9 and has been with the Blues ever since. The 18-year-old, who was pictured as a ball boy a few years ago alongside Pep Guardiola, is a current member of the EDS team but has had an injury-hit season so far.

The attacking midfielder was an integral part of the U18 title-winning side last season and bagged himself 11 goals and 8 assists in his 22 appearances across the campaign. The Manchester-born England youth international is a silky midfielder who excels when it comes to dribbling and working in small spaces or half-spaces. Also capable of playing on the left of a front three, Hamilton has a similar gait to him as that of Jadon Sancho, with his smooth control over the ball and quick movements from a standstill.


Hamilton isn’t quite the eye-catching attacker that Mebude or Borges are, but we expect a big season for him next year as he returns to full fitness from injury and cements his place in Barry-Murphy’s side.

Photo courtesy of Instagram: @micah.hamilton10
 

Tomas Galvez


Position: Left Back

Preferred Foot: Left

Age: 17

Height: 5ft 8in


Yes, you read that correctly, City have a left-back on the books. Not just any left-back either, Galvez has been very impressive this season along that left flank, already featuring regularly for the EDS after joining from Watford as a 16-year-old in the summer.

Galvez started as backup often to Kane Taylor in the U18s and Juan Larios and Josh Wilson-Esbrand for the EDS, but, with all three of them out injured, the Finnish international has stepped up to the plate. He has been growing in confidence throughout his EDS appearances and is beginning to show the talent that caught City's attention.


A marauding fullback, Galvez is a superb ball carrier and loves to go on runs down the left wing often linking up with James McAtee and Samuel Edozie. His fight and determination against his older opponents have also been impressive as he gets stuck in at the back.


Coming through the academy as a left-back, there is always going to be the opportunity in the first-team squad for him – but let’s just pray Galvez doesn’t fall victim to the Manchester City left-back curse.

Photo courtesy of Instagram: @tomgalvezz
 

Honourable Mentions:


Josh Adam – Central Midfield, 18 years old

Mahamadou Susoho – Defensive Midfield, 17 years old

Nico O’Reilly – Attacking Midfield, 17 years old

Luca Barrington – Winger, 17 years old

Joel Ndala – Winger, 15 years old

Photo courtesy of Instagram: @joshadam10
 

Written by: @_TJ9320


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