The North East falling behind in the development of top players
A study into where Premier League players were born and developed has revealed that the North East is no longer a breeding ground for top players.
In a study, it was discovered that only three players who have been developed in the region continue to ply their trades at top-division clubs. Liverpool’s Jordan Henderson and goalkeepers Fraser Forster and Jordan Pickford make up the exclusive group of current players.
Instead, the footballing hotspots of the country are in other areas of the North. The North West has 14 players from the region performing at the highest level and 17 who were developed in their academies. In 2016/17, Manchester United beat off their city rivals as their graduates saw 44,055 minutes in the Premier League.
Yorkshire and the Humber is another northern region that is continuing to produce talent for the top division. There will potentially be nine players hailing from the area in England’s 2018 World Cup squad. Kyle Walker, John Stones and Jamie Vardy are the highest profile of this group.
London is the second-most successful region when it comes to players hailing from the area, with 12. However, only eight players were produced in the academies of London clubs. Tottenham Hotspur are the most likely club in the region to see their academy graduates getting game time. They were afforded 21,668 minutes in the 2016/17 season.
Looking to the South East, the area is on the rise in terms of producing the best players. England regulars like Dele Alli and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain hail from the area. The elite pair were nurtured at MK Dons and Southampton respectively. The Saints are another team that ranks highly for giving youth a chance – academy graduates from the club saw a total of 14,340 minutes in the Premier League in 2016/17.