City&aposs annual report contains plenty of impressive figures as it is designed to – from the financial side, to their growing reach in the digital world – with 25 million average monthly users on YouTube, and 1.5billions engagements across Instagram, Facebook, X and Tiktok, with 132m followers across the club&aposs main social media accounts. There were almost seven billion video views across the club&aposs social media accounts, the report says.
The report is a chance for City to showcase their successes, and the treble campaign and record financial figures are at the forefront of those highlights. For example, there is passing mention to the women&aposs team&aposs disappointing finish last season (CEO Ferran Soriano insists the team are on the right path), and very limited reference to the Premier League charges levelled at the club. The record wage bill is only mentioned after all the record revenues and profits.
One statistic mentioned by chairman Khaldoon Al Mubarak, however, is just as impressive as the rest.
After praising the academy for their third straight Premier League 2 title and fourth straight Under-18 Premier League title, the chairman noted that last season, 64 City academy graduates were playing for teams in the top five European Leagues and the professional English Football Leagues 13 in the Premier League.
That figure will have grown this season, with more players like Cole Palmer, James Trafford, Shea Charles, Carlos Borges and Dire Medbude leaving in search of senior football, with millions gained for the club&aposs transfer budget. In fact, of the 121.7 in profit from player trading, Al Mubarak noted that “much of which [transfer profits] related to academy graduates.”
The chairman wrote: “We are clearly creating players of high quality for our Club and English and European football. In doing so we are delivering important players and sustainable revenues for Manchester Citys broader football ambitions.”
“The academy delivered the Premier League 2 and U18 league titles for the third successive year. Thats a clean sweep of Premier League titles three years in a row a remarkable record of consistency that underpins our first team results and underlines the work and the commitment I see across our football club every single day.
“There can be no greater proof of the hard work, dedication, commitment and talent across every aspect of our football club than these records of consistent performance in ever-changing circumstances. It reveals us to be constantly capable of learning from adversity and able to always challenge ourselves to successfully innovate in all areas of our football operations.”
Of the 199 players in the academy last season, 133 (67 per cent) were locally-based – 41 (21pc) coming from Manchester and 92 (46pc) from Greater Manchester.
As well as the Elite Development Squad and Youth team, the report also highlights titles won at under-16, under-13, under-12, under-11, under-10 and under-9 level, and highlights the off-pitch work done with players of all ages to prepare them for a life as a footballer (or possibly not as a footballer). They boast an 83 per cent GCSE pass rate across players, with 100 per cent of BTECs achieved on or above target grades. For players who leave the club after scholarship level, a ten-year programme is in place to support them after release.