Jose Mourinho hates youth. Pep Guardiola is the best around at developing talent.
But are these old assumptions accurate?
Is Arsene Wenger still a shining light when it comes to blooding talent?
Here’s a look at exactly how many Premier League minutes each of the top six clubs have given to graduates from their own academy so far this season.
*To be considered, players must have joined the club aged 16 or younger – prohibiting Danny Rose and Francis Coquelin who joined Tottenham and Arsenal respectively at 17 – and not immediately part of the first-team squad.
6. Manchester City – 7 minutes
Phil Foden (7)
For all Manchester City’s investment in youth, marvellous training facilities at the Etihad Campus and Pep Guardiola’s revered reputation for developing talent, Phil Foden is the only academy player to have got on the pitch in the Premier League so far this season.
Most of Foden’s chances have come in European and cup competitions, with the 17-year-old playing seven Premier League minutes against Tottenham last month.
5. Liverpool – 710 minutes
Trent Alexander-Arnold (710)
Born in West Derby, the same area of the city as Liverpool’s Melwood training ground, home-grown defender Trent Alexander-Arnold is as local as they come.
The right-back has benefitted from the injury absence of Nathaniel Clyne this season, starting eight Premier League games as a result. Only halfway through his second campaign as a senior, he’s played 27 first-team games overall to date.
4. Chelsea – 1,325 minutes
Andreas Christensen (1,281)
Charly Musonda (26)
Jeremie Boga (18)
Danish defender Andreas Christensen is finally getting his chance at Chelsea this season after a successful two-year loan at Borussia Monchengladbach in Germany.
Now 21 years of age, Christensen joined Chelsea’s academy from Brondby when he was 16 and enjoyed FA Youth Cup and UEFA Youth League success in the junior ranks.
*Ethan Ampadu has not been included as he had previously played first-team football for Exeter and has regularly been part of the first-team squad at Chelsea since joining in summer.
3. Tottenham Hotspur – 2,738 minutes
Harry Kane (1,868)
Harry Winks (772)
Kyle Walker-Peters (98)
Famously homegrown, Harry Kane is arguably the biggest success story for any Premier League academy this century. After four Football League loans, Kane became a first-team player at Spurs in 2014 and hasn’t looked back.
He has been joined on the pitch in the Premier League this season by younger academy graduates Harry Winks and Kyle Walker-Peters.
2. Manchester United – 3,540 minutes
Marcus Rashford (1,300)
Paul Pogba (1,134)
Jesse Lingard (1,004)
Scott McTominay (101)
Axel Tuanzebe (1)
Now into his second full season as a Manchester United first-team player, local starlet Marcus Rashford has played more minutes of Premier League football than all but six member of the whole squad so far in 2017/18.
Given that Paul Pogba was signed for £89m in 2016, it can be easy to forget he first joined United as a 16-year-old and spent three years with the academy and reserves before going to Juventus. The Frenchman was an FA Youth Cup winner in 2011 alongside Jesse Lingard.
1. Arsenal – 4,130 minutes
Hector Bellerin (2,070)
Alex Iwobi (849)
Jack Wilshere (704)
Ainsley Maitland-Niles (507)
Arsenal are the top six club where academy graduates have been given the most Premier League chances this season, with four players on the pitch for at least 500 minutes.
Much of the Gunners’ total come from Hector Bellerin, who joined the academy at the age of 16 after leaving Barcelona. Jack Wilshere has returned to the fold this season, while Alex Iwobi is still on the scene, and versatile Ainsley Maitland-Niles is a new favourite of Arsene Wenger.
*Theo Walcott has not been included because even though he initially signed a scholar contract at the age of 16, he was immediately handed a professional deal less than two months later when he turned 17. The forward was also considered ‘first-team’ straight away.