Martinez hails 'terrific' work of Everton's Academy

, 8 January, 0comments  |  Jump to most recent

With the likes of Ross Barkley, Seamus Coleman and John Stones making names for themselves in Everton's first team and a host of players out on loan at other clubs, Roberto Martinez has lauded the work being done in Everton's Academy.

Speaking to representatives of some of Everton's fan sites last night, the Blues' manager expressed his pleasure at both the number of players who are coming through the club's ranks and the environment created by the club's senior players that allows young players to come into and thrive in the first team.

Martinez highlighted the achievements of Barkley and Coleman and the recent emergence of John Stones but was keen to stress the importance of the conveyor belt of potential future first-teamers behind them as well. Many of those, including England U18 international and rising prospect Chris Long who joined MK Dons this week, have been farmed out on loan to gain vital experience.

"To be able to send 9 payers into the professional game the work we're doing in the Academy is terrific," the Spaniard said. "Alan Irvine has the right ideas about how to develop players and we need to carry on developing the youngsters.

"When you've got a young player being able to perform the in the manner Ross Barkley has, it's down to the senior boys. In many dressing rooms you can create have an environment where the young boys are going to be blamed for making mistakes. Here it is the opposite; everyone is encouraged to make mistakes but just take responsibility and just react well.

"And that's down to the likes of Phil Jagielka, Tim Howard, Sylvain Distin, Gareth Barry, Leighton Baines... those players allow you to produce good youngsters. I want to keep that culture."

In addition to Long's spell in Milton Keynes, John Lundstram and Shane Duffy are on loan at Yeovil, Luke Garbutt is at Colchester United, Francisco Junior has extended his stay at Vitesse Arnhem to the end of the season, Matthew Pennington is at Tranmere and Hallam Hope scored on his debut for Northampton last Saturday. And Conor McAleny, who has just resumed training for the first time since breaking his leg, would still be at Brentford were it not for his season-ending injury at the very start of his loan.

The boss also suggested that Matthew Kennedy and Ty Browning are the next young players being primed for loan spells in the lower divisions.


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