When it comes to the future, we all need to think carrots

I really enjoyed your interview with Trevor Brooking and I agreed with his comments that fundamental changes need to be made in the way our young players are coached if England are ever going to succeed on the international stage again.

I really enjoyed your interview with Trevor Brooking and I agreed with his comments that fundamental changes need to be made in the way our young players are coached if England are ever going to succeed on the international stage again.

I find it hard to believe why, as businessmen, owners cannot look beyond the short-term, invest in their youth system and work towards a brighter future. There will be some who say, and rightly so, that survival in the Premier League is all that matters but surely, as businessmen, football club owners would ensure their club could survive a drop down a division?

The other argument I’d have with these people is it costs a fraction of the money to invest in the youth system compared to how much you’ll have to pay to buy the players in and pay their wages. To put it another way, it costs far less to grow your own carrots then it does to go to your local supermarket and buy them.

Southampton are an excellent example of a club which pumped money into its youth set-up and is now reaping the benefit of this investment with the likes of Luke Shaw, Jay Rodriguez and Adam Lallana all coming through their system and breaking into the first team. What I’ve found most interesting with the Saints is that they have, pardon the pun, still gone marching on despite losing some of their key academy products.

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