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Sunderland boss rues Premier League 'monster'

Mon 12th Jul 2010 | Club & Country Competitions

Sunderland boss Steve Bruce has spoken out at the lack of home-grown talent breaking through into the "monster" the Barclays Premier League has become.

Bruce is not optimistic for the future as the inquest over England's disastrous World Cup campaign gets into full swing and questions are asked about where the next generation of international stars will come from.

The Sunderland boss who was able to bring through teenager midfielder Jordan Henderson last season, has high hopes for Martyn Waghorn and Jack Colback, who thrived on loan at Championship Leicester and Ipswich respectively last season.

However, he knows that the Premier League presents an entirely different challenge, and he is concerned about the lack of talent emerging from the ranks around the country.

"Waghorn and Colback, this is a big year for them. They will definitely make a living in the game, they have proved that playing in the Championship said Bruce on football365

"But as we know, the Premier League is a hugely different ball game, and that's where the problem is.

"We have created a monster with this Premier League. It's a fantastic league, a very good league, but to actually bring people through, it has been difficult.

"We are a victim of our own success in the Premier League. Me, for example, as a manager, I am scouring South America or Europe or whatever because we need them today to go and play.

"I would love to go and sign a 20-year-old from Bury or Rochdale or anywhere, I would love to sign a young English player.

"But unfortunately, we are not producing them and there have to be big questions asked of why, in our society, we are not producing them when we have got something like 42, 43 Academies in this country from eight to 16.

"We are simply not producing the quality of player that we used to produce. That's the debate."

Bruce was a player at Manchester United as Sir Alex Ferguson's golden generation of Ryan Giggs, David Beckham, Paul Scholes, Nicky Butt and the Neville brothers broke through to make it all the way to the top.

The Sunderland boss admits it was a "fluke" to get so many top-class players through in such a short space of time, and believes the problem could in part lie in the changing nature of today's society.

He said: "We produced them [at United], but I don't think we are producing them like we used to.

"I'll give you an example: when do you see kids playing in a field any more with two jumpers down and playing with a football? You never see it.

"They are at home with computers, iPods, iPhones, g-pods or whatever they call them, and the kids don't play anymore.

"That, to me, is one of the reasons as well. There are a whole load of issues, but we are certainly not producing footballers like we used to."

In the short-term, Bruce is continuing his search for new recruits, and is hopeful of adding further signings.

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