While rumoured to be sought after by a variety of clubs in the Premier League most notably Manchester City, seventeen year old Turkish U17 star Abdülkadir Kayalı surprised many when he signed with Istanbul side Fenerbahçe. While this is not the first time such a situation will occur, losing a chance to pick up a great young star is a difficult hand to be dealt but in this case it signals a serious problem.
There are a number of considerations that should be gleamed from this event. First and foremost, while many are anxious for immediate results Mark Hughes must invest in the future. While the club is rumoured to be paying a hearty ransom for a number of players in the later stages of their career, they must designate a sizable amount of their fortune towards younger players and in losing the young Turkish star, they certainly did not put for a similar effort they have made with older players. As an example Manchester United’s £16.3m acquisition of FK Partizan’s Zoran Tošić and Adem Ljajić was utter brilliance and while some might question the overall price, it was a masterful stroke. Yet I hear very little of the Citizens looking to younger players within my broad coaching network and this is were they could make their greatest impact. While supporters are anxious to see a trophy case being filled, in my opinion they would equally respect wise investments in the future. Secondly and possibly most disturbing, early talk of heightened investment in the academy has been hollow. While material additions, such as the building of a world-wide network take time and will be built through City CEO Gary Cook former employers exclusively, domestically there has not been the slightest indication that they increasing their commitment.
Make no mistake as City continues to jockey for positions on players of today, they have forgotten the future and in-time that will be a heavy cost.