Report: Boyhood Liverpool fan Patrick Roberts snubbed Liverpool for Manchester City

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The former Fulham prodigy signed for Manchester City over the club he supported as a buy.

New Manchester City signing Patrick Roberts turned down a move to Liverpool last week in preference for moving to the Etihad, say the Daily Mail.

The 18-year-old joined the club from Fulham for what the Mail say is an £8 million fee, alongside two other Englishman in Raheem Sterling and Fabian Delph, in what is a marked change in recruitment for the Citizens.

The report says that the winger's family hail from Merseyside, and that the Roberts himself was a boyhood Liverpool fan, only for the player to choose City over several Premier League sides that were chasing him, including the Reds.

But although City are playing Champions League football next season while Liverpool are in the Europa League, there are some that will wonder whether it was a sensible move by the youngster. 

How much football will get Roberts get?

Though it is undeniable that moving to Manchester City is a significant step up from Fulham for the England Under-19 international, with the club's outstanding facilities and impressive youth team setup, he is moving to a club that have a poor track record when it comes to bringing young players through into the first team. 

Despite Patrick Vieira's development squad often contesting the major trophies at their level, no player has broken into the first team squad having joined the club as young as Roberts has, whether that has been via the youth team or in expensive transfers like the Englishman is.

The last players to enter the first team squad via the youth teams were Micah Richards, who ended up falling out of favour, and Joe Hart. Both individuals who made the initial step up before the Abu Dhabi group invested in the club.

Roberts will find it incredibly hard to feature for City next season in any competition but the League Cup, so unless he gets a loan, his first team football is likely to be suspended for the next few seasons, something that could threaten his development after he made 20 appearances for the Cottagers in this last campaign.

Compare City to Liverpool, who though they have had less success in recent seasons, remain one of the biggest teams in the country, and there is considerable cause to think that Roberts may have been better placed to claim Premier League football via Anfield. Raheem Sterling, Jordon Ibe and Jon Flanagan are just some of the youngsters to have emerged into the first team from the academy in recent years.

English football fans will be hoping he won't go the way of the likes of Jack Rodwell and Scott Sinclair, much more developed players who failed to establish themselves at City and soon moved away from the club after losing a couple of years of football.

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