Our Under 14 Academy side took on the world's best in the Nexen Manchester City Cup in California

Following a successful campaign at the 2019 Manchester City Abu Dhabi Cup in April, the boys headed to California to face off against some of the world’s best youth teams in the Nexen Manchester City Cup.

Touching down in sunny San Diego late last week, Coach Max Clarke and Team Manager, Earl Michelle, guided the team through the jet lag to line up alongside sister Club’s New York City FC and Manchester City FC – the first time all three have competed at the same tournament. A real family affair!

In what was a huge tournament, our boys competed in the tough International Super Group, drawn against LAFC, Seattle’s Crossfire Premier and giants of Mexican football, Deportivo Guadalajara Chivas.

City kicked off their campaign with a tough assignment against the much-fancied Los Angeles Football Club, eventually going down 2-0 despite playing some attractive football. But, in tournament football, you have to bounce back quickly and our boys responded, forcing a draw with the impressive Club Deportivo Guadalajara (Chivas) outfit later in the afternoon. The hard-fought battle ended with the scores locked at 0-0.

A much-needed rest saw the boys wake the following day to play out a 1-1 stalemate with Seattle’s Crossfire Premier before registering their first win of the competition, with a comprehensive 4-0 win over San Diego’s OC Surf in the Bronze Quarter Playoffs.

The reward? A bronze medal semi-final against another difficult opponent, Minnesota United FC. Home advantage proved too strong for the team in City blue, going down 5-1 after begin forced to chase the game in an open contest.

City’s final match of the cup was their second clash with Crossfire to determine the third placed team in the Bronze Playoffs. After a long few days, and 60-minutes of tight football, the boys eventually went down 2-1.

A massive effort from everybody involved and a showcase of the style of football Melbourne can produce and, despite not getting the results they wanted, the team has done themselves proud.

On to the next one!