Football factory

The Manchester City Football Academy.  (Alex Livesey / Getty Images)
The Manchester City Football Academy. (Alex Livesey / Getty Images)

Manchester City opened its new £200 million (Dh1.14bn) training facility on Monday, as The National reported yesterday. The City Football Academy will be the base for 450 of the club’s players from the Under-6 squad through to the first team. City’s ambition is for the new academy to produce a steady stream of home-grown talent and reduce the club’s present reliance on big-money signings.

Six years ago, City’s owner Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed said that he intended to build a club for the future and “not just a team of all-stars” – the new facility appears to be the very embodiment of that aim.

The project also provides an object lesson in smart investing: much of the construction work was carried out by companies employing local workers, giving back to the community that surrounds the CFA, while also helping to revitalise a derelict area of Manchester. Where once there was contaminated soil, now there are fields of dreams.

Published: December 9, 2014 04:00 AM