AC Milan lead all Italian clubs in terms of giving playing time to players from their Primavera system, a study has shown.
This is according to the CIES Football Observatory – as cited by MilanNews.it – who have analysed the use of players who have come through the youth systems of all sides in Europe’s ‘top five’ leagues since the beginning of the decade.
Athletic Bilbao is the team that gave the most playing time to homemade products, though it is worth noting that the Basque side are unique in the European scene having always had a self-sufficient policy.
Barcelona are in second place, with their world-famous ‘La Masia’ system having produced the likes of Lionel Messi, Xavi, Iniesta, Gerard Pique and many more.
Third place for Lyon, another club famous for its innovative football academy.
Milan sit in 18th overall, and are the leading Italian club in terms of giving first team opportunities to academy players. Over the years we have seen the likes of Ignazio Abate and Luca Antonini win the 2010/11 Scudetto, and in more recent years there has been the emergence of Gianluigi Donnarumma, Davide Calabria, Manuel Locatelli and Patrick Cutrone.
Roma are the second-ranking Serie A side and they sit 21st in the overall standings.
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