EDS y Academia

Davies: Team first attitude proving the difference

EDS boss Simon Davies is delighted with the attitude his side have shown so far this season.

Davies’ Premier League 2 team sit top of the table while the UEFA Youth League line-up are in a strong position to qualify from a difficult group that mirrors the first team.

A number of absentees has led to a slight change in team shape but Davies believes the mentality of his players is giving them the edge against a number of opponents.

This has been highlighted by the versatility of Brahim Diaz, normally an attacking midfielder, to fill in at the top of the pitch while City’s strikers are injured.

Davies said: “Brahim, like the rest of the squad, has a fantastic attitude and puts the team first. He’s been playing slightly out of position because of the injuries to Isaac [Buckley-Ricketts] and Lukas [Nmecha] but everyone is prepared to put the team first.

“They have to be good footballers to wear a Manchester City shirt but the togetherness they are showing is proving to be the difference.”

Davies’ youngsters are unbeaten in their last six matches in the Premier League 2, having seen off the likes of Liverpool, Tottenham and Southampton in recent weeks and the manager is certain the team are only going to get better.

He said: “They have worked hard in all aspects of their profession, not just on the pitch with the game plan. They are a good group of players who are working well at all the small things that make the difference.

“It’s always hard to tell with such a young squad and because we’re competing across a lot of competitions, the group is going to be stretched but that’s a vital experience.

“We’ll keep playing the way we know and we’ll see how far it takes us. It’s easy to get carried away with league positions but staying true to the way we play means it’s all focused on development.”

Despite two strong showings against Barcelona in the UEFA Youth League, City fell to consecutive defeats to the team from the famous La Masia academy.

City created a host of chances throughout the two matches but their failure to score leaves them needing results against Borussia Monchengladbach and Celtic to qualify from Group C.

UNLUCKY: Brahim works his way around Barca keeper Puig before rolling the ball wide
UNLUCKY: Brahim works his way around Barca keeper Puig before rolling the ball wide

Davies was encouraged with the performance of his side, despite the lack of goals.

He said: “The philosophy that the academy and the football club is progressing all the time. Lots of people have had an impact on the way this academy works, including staff that have come and gone, but we’re continuing that journey to adapt our young players.

“We’re pleased that those matches demonstrated we’re near to where Barcelona are now but this time we failed in the results so there’s still a way to go.”

Davies’ team travel to Everton in the Premier League 2 on the 20 November before welcoming Chelsea to the Academy Stadium on the 26 November.

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