West Brom boss Mowbray: Academy will produce results

West Brom boss Tony Mowbray is excited about the current crop of players coming through the Academy.

West Brom boss Tony Mowbray is excited about the current crop of players coming through the Academy.

“The academy is only three years old,” Mowbray told the Express & Star. “I came in and asked where the talent was because every club needs home-bred talented players coming into their team.

“If you look at Middlesbrough at the moment, half their players are from the academy and half are big signings and the balance is there.

“When was the last time a West Bromwich Albion kid came through the ranks from seven, eight or nine and into the first team? Who was the last one to be a big success? I am struggling to think of one apart from people who might have played a few games and moved on.

“It needs to change and the club needs to start producing players who are good enough to get an opportunity. The problem is that we are now in the Premier League.

“We might have players who are good enough to play in the Championship but playing in the Premier League is a massive ask for players of 16, 17 or 18-year-olds. When I first came in I asked the academy about the 16-year-olds but they said the under-14s and under-15s were their best crop.

“For a couple of years there were a couple of youth teams that didn’t produce a player but I think we’ve now got a team of players who, in a couple of years time, might be knocking on the door.

“That is a process that every academy of three or four years old has to go through.

“When they start off identifying young talent it is the 13 and 14-year-olds who are likely to be the first crop coming through into the first team.

“It would be unfair to name them but I think there are three or four who have a good chance of being West Bromwich Albion first team players.”

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