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English academies have left Germany behind, says Zorc


Bundesliga leaders Dortmund play Tottenham Hotspur on Wednesday at Wembley in an intriguing Champions League last 16 tie with Jadon Sancho, 18, a regular in the German side following his successful move from Manchester City in August 2017.
Dortmund's domestic rivals are attempting to develop a Sancho of their own.
Welsh winger Rabbi Matondo, 18, joined Schalke last month and England youth internationals Reiss Nelson, 19, and Emile Rowe-Smith, 18, have both quit Arsenal for loan spells at Hoffenheim and RB Leipzig respectively.
Even Bayern Munich are following the trend by attempting to lure England Under-19 forward Callum Hudson-Odoi from Chelsea.
Zorc says it is becoming harder to discover talent in Germany, leaving Bundesliga clubs looking overseas and scouring the academies of Premier League clubs.
"As a German club, we would favour, of course, identifying and signing German talent or developing them in our academy," said Dortmund's sports director.
"But when it gets to absolutely top talents, it's more and more difficult to find them in Germany, to be honest."

  They overtook us'

For a while, Germany's best youngsters often headed to England, attracted by big salaries in the Premier League, which enjoys a higher global profile.
Leroy Sane, still only 23, was the last German starlet to make the grade when he left Schalke for Manchester City in August 2016.
Since then, the trend has reversed with British youngsters, no longer content to sit on the bench of Premier League clubs, trying their luck in the Bundesliga.
"Go back say five to ten years, there was a time that English clubs were keen to sign German players," said Zorc.
"But in the meantime, we have the feeling that the education and development of youth players in the English academies is quite good, to be honest.
"The teams don't only spend much money on transfers or salaries, but also on infrastructure.
"When you see these youth academies - for example Man City - you can't compare it with the German standard, it's much higher.
"And also it seems to me that it's something like a business model, because even if they don't succeed in their own teams, they sell them for higher prices.
"I just read a figure of Man City - I think they've sold young players for more than 150 million within the last three to five years.
"You can see it also in results. You know the English teams are reaching Under-17, Under-19 (finals) compared to the German ones.
"It seems to me that they overtook us."

  Emphasis on youth

Will Brexit, Britain's decision to leave the European Union, have an impact on teenagers moving to Germany?
"I don't know," said Zorc. "Nobody knows.
"When you watch what has happened in the last six months, there are a lot of German clubs who are looking at England."
Only four of the current squad - captain Marco Reus, Mario Goetze, Jacob Bruun Larsen and Marcel Schmelzer - are products of Dortmund's academy.
The number is lower at Bayern Munich where Thomas Mueller and Austria's David Alaba are the only first-team regulars to have graduated from the academy.
Zorc says they recruited Sancho by offering him a clear chance to play first-team football and the English teen has seized the opportunity with eight goals and 13 assists in 28 games this season.
He scored once, played a key role in two more goals and hit the post in Saturday's 3-3 draw at home to Hoffenheim.
There is a clear emphasis on youth as regulars Sancho, Chelsea-bound Christian Pulisic, Dan-Axel Zagadou and Larsen are all under 21.
"I think the most important thing is not to make promises you can't keep," said Zorc.
"We don't say 'you are going to play, definitely', we say 'there will be opportunities'.
"We have a clear structure, but you can often look at our team sheet and see how many young players play each Saturday - not just in cup games, but big matches, including the Champions League."


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Team Emirates’ Pogacar claims podium finish

A monumental final push in the UAE heat from Tadej Pogacar wasn’t enough to take the win in the third stage of the team’s home country as Adam Yates...

The 184km Emirates Stage finished with an exhausting 10.8km climb as Yates launched a surprisingly early attack with 6km to go. Pogacar didn’t react to Yates’ initial acceleration but then ripped clear of the chasing group with 5km remaining, finishing second in the stage, claiming the young rider’s jersey and ending the day second in the GC in a successful day for the team.

Pogacar said “It was extremely hot today, so for me on a climb like that in those temperatures it was a really good ride and I’m pleased.

“There is still three stages with another big mountain stage and the chance of crosswinds tomorrow so it’s not over yet. We have a strong team here so will try something for sure.”

Pogacar will get another chance to claim back the one minute GC deficit as the fifth stage of the Tour finishes at the same Jebel Hafeet summit.

Pogacar will wear the white young rider’s jersey in Wednesday’s stage as the race sees the riders return to the flats which will come as welcome relief for the sprinters.

The Emirates NBD Stage starts from Zabeel Park, crosses Mushrif Park and Motor City before finishing at Dubai City Walk where the popular walkway has been transformed as part of the racing route.

British climber Yates pulverised the opposition on the tough, final ascent of stage, winning by over a minute and taking the overall race lead.

His compatriot Chris Froome was dropped early in the race.

The four-time Tour de France winner again struggled on his comeback from injuries sustained last May.

The 27-year-old Yates is also making his 2020 debut and looks favourite to win in a competitive field after his stunning attack from 6km out at the end of a warm day with temperatures passing 30C.

“I attacked maybe a little too early, but in the end I felt good,” said Yates, whose win gives him a 1min 07sec lead in the overall.

“A minute is a lot, but we have to do this climb again, and maybe my legs won’t be so good then,” Yates said in reference to stage five.

“Also tomorrow I heard a rumour there are going to be crosswinds, so we’ll see.”

Yates was followed up the final 10.6km Jebell Hafeet climb at a 7 per cent gradient by a trio of challengers with Slovenian prodigy Pogacar finishing 1min 03sec adrift.

Astana’s Alexey Lutsenko was third at 1min 30sec accompanied by up-and-coming Frenchman David Gaudu.

Yates came fourth at the 2016 Tour de France and is targeting the Grand Boucle this summer where he will lead the Australian team ahead of his brother Simon.

Wednesday’s flat stage, the fourth of seven, is a 173km run to Dubai City Walk where a mass bunch sprint is expected.

Stage 3 Results

1. Adam Yates (GBR) Mitchelton-Scott 4h42’34”

2. Tadej Pogacar (SLO) UAE Team Emirates +1:03

3. Alexey Lutsenko (KAZ) Astana +1:30

General Classification Results

1. Adam Yates (GBR) Mitchelton-Scott 12h30’02”

2. Tadej Pogacar (SLO) UAE Team Emirates +1:07

3. Alexey Lutsenko (KAZ) Astana +1:35

22 hours ago