The more academy products in your first-team squad, the better your chances of winning titles, according to the results of a study by the CIES Football Observatory.
The Football Observatory‘s study evaluated 31 of Europe’s top leagues between 2009 and 2017. Their analysis shows that a quarter of players in championship winning squads are club-trained. Only a fifth of players overall count as club-trained.
A club-trained footballer is someone who spent at least three years with their current team between the ages of 15 and 21.
Another interesting thing to note is that the percentage of club-trained players in each squad is consistently going down every year. In 2009, 23.2% of players fulfilled these requirements, compared to only 18.4% today.
If having club-trained players in your squad is an advantage, then the benefits should become even more prominent as your average club cuts back on them.
That’s good news for Arsenal, given the current strength of the club’s academy. The u18s and the u23s are both second in their domestic leagues right now. The u18s are also in the semi-finals of the FA Youth Cup, and the u23s are in the semi-finals of the Premier League International Cup.
If Arsenal can take advantage of that by integrating those players into the first-team, it should help the senior side find similar success.