Michel Platini threatens to close Manchester United academy
And he wants to ban Manchester City from European football
Uefa president Michel Platini has sensationally threatened to stifle Manchester United’s acclaimed academy system by promising the city’s best talent to rivals Manchester City. Platini’s comments will come as a shock to the club who won the Champions League in 1999 with seven former academy players in their squad.
Platini said he wanted to curb the number of foreign imports. He added: “That means Manchester City can have all the young players of Manchester. They can work and come to the training centre of City and become Kaka. And they don’t need to buy him for 150million because they have their own school.”
The former France international who, irony fans will observe, shamelessly blocked the progress of young Italian players during his time at Juventus also said he wanted to block City from playing in Europe if their success was bankrolled by Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan.
He said: “I’m finding a system where you can spend what you have. If one Sheikh brings 150million euros for Kaka then you have to put his salary on top of the transfer fee. If the club go over their income with the player’s salary plus fee, they can be banned from our competitions because they don’t respect their budget.
“It’s about a licensing system where clubs spend within their income. Clubs who are banned will be replaced by those further down the table of that country who meet the criteria. It’s not to disturb football but to protect it.”