Aberdeen reveal market value importance of developing young talent - plus transfer update

For Scottish clubs, a valuable avenue to increase revenue is the development of academy talents to contribute at first-team level before selling on for significant fees.

Calvin Ramsay has been a hugely impressive figure for Aberdeen since breaking into the first team. (Photo by Ross Parker / SNS Group)
Calvin Ramsay has been a hugely impressive figure for Aberdeen since breaking into the first team. (Photo by Ross Parker / SNS Group)

That was outlined by Aberdeen's football director Steven Gunn at the club's AGM on Monday.

A review of the football operation has led the Dons to make structural changes to the way they operate in a bid to help the progression of the club’s best young talents.

Stephen Glass has been boosted by the impact of both Calvin Ramsay and Jack MacKenzie at first-tram level, the latter becoming the latest player to sign a contract extension, his deal securing him until 2025.

Gunn revealed the importance of developing academy players to the point they can be integrated into the first-team level at a young age in order to progress and gain experience and exposure with a view to selling them on.

“Industry data suggest a player’s transfer value is twice as high at age 20 than it is at 25, reducing by 13 per cent each season," he told the AGM.

"So there’s a responsibility for us to ensure our homegrown talent can be of the necessary standard to make a positive impact in the first team environment by age 20 if we are to maximise our opportunity to realise that value for our most promising talents.

“An important part of being able to protect that value too is our contract strategy. Pleasingly, in the last year, Calvin Ramsay, Kieran Ngwenya, Kevin Hanratty, Evan Towler, Tom Ritchie and Ryan Duncan have all committed to extended contracts.”

During the summer, Aberdeen undertook an important transfer window with Stephen Glass looking to implement his way of working across the squad.

There could be further additions in January.

“Now that we have important elements of our renewed player recruitment structure in place, we’ve been working over the past few months on our positional priorities for potential January and Summer 2022 player engagements," Gunn said.

“All of the same principles apply in terms of seeking to add value to the squad, identifying players who fit with our philosophy and bring a positive influence to the dressing room, while also ensuring we remain committed to keeping pathways open for our younger talent to emerge.”

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