Saturday 25 February 2017

New contract beckons as Byrne trains with City's first team

John Fallon

Jack Bryen goes through his paces in training
Jack Bryen goes through his paces in training

IRELAND U-21 international Jack Byrne is set to sign a new deal with Premier League champions Manchester City.

The former St Kevin's midfielder was promoted to train with City's first-team squad yesterday ahead of Monday's trip to Crystal Palace.

Byrne posted pictures of himself going through his paces alongside David Silva, Jesus Navas, Edin Dzeko and Frank Lampard .

The Dubliner has proved a big hit at City since joining them at the age of 15, impressing youth team coach Patrick Vieira with his displays.

He was integral to their surge into the quarter-finals of the UEFA Champions League Youth Cup last month, aiding his bid to convince Manuel Pellegrini of his readiness to step up.

Once he signs a new contract, Byrne is expected to go out on loan next season - providing City can find the right club.

"City won't loan a player out just for the sake of it," explained Byrne. "They'll only deal with clubs where the player will develop working to a similar philosophy and get games.

"Of course, I'd love to go on loan. I'll discuss it with the club when the time is right."

Byrne, the youngest and strongest performer in Ireland's U-21 victory over Andorra last week, said that working under Pellegrini was a breath of fresh air compared to his experiences with Roberto Mancini.

"He (Mancini) would walk straight by you in the corridor without even saying hello," said Byrne,

"Manuel Pellegrini has a lot of respect for the club's academy players and makes sure we are kept involved in everything around the club.

"He has brought the youths, U-21s and first-team much closer together, whereas we'd use different facilities to the first-team before, everything is open for all the squads now. It's a real family atmosphere."

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