Monday, October 3, 2022

Manchester City In The Fray To Snatch-Up This Real Madrid Starlet: Makes Sense From Pep?

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Anirban Sarkar
Anirban Sarkar is a former columnist of The 4th Official. A huge East Bengal fan and has travelled over 1000 miles to see his team in action.

Manchester City are currently on a rampaging mode as Pep Guardiola’s side have scored 15 goals in the last three matches across all competitions. It seems the Spanish gaffer has at last found the right balance but in some sections, he still wants to bring in reinforcements in a bid to convert City into a European powerhouse.

Guardiola invested massively this summer bringing a number of players but he is expected to go big in the winter transfer window. If reports are to be believed the Sky Blues boss is ready to pursue the signing of Real Madrid’s Marcos Llorente.

The 22-year-old has been the hottest transfer prospects this summer but Madrid rejected all the offers to keep the youngster at the Santiago Bernabeu. The 22 year had a quite fruitful last season as he spent the campaign on loan with Alaves racking up 32 appearances for them.

An array of hopes raised following his excellent performances for the Spain U-21 in the European Championship but Zinedine Zidane doesn’t seem to be moved by his quality on the pitch. Los Blancos do have a very well-oiled midfield section which boasts of Casemiro, Luka Modric and Toni Kroos.

The emergence of Mateo Kovacic has been a block in his resurgence. The Croatian midfielder has already played a number of games this season but an injury to him has opened an unlikely window of opportunity for Llorente. The youngster started last weekend for the Whites as they drew at home to Levante.

Zidane needs to rotate his team in a bid to keep his side fresh and full as they are competing on four fronts this season and Llorente could use this opportunity to make up things. The Spanish giants haven’t shown the urgency to renew his stay as his contract is scheduled to expire next summer.

Guardiola has Illkay Gundogan and Fernandinho at his disposal in the middle of the pitch. Fernandinho undoubtedly has been pretty excellent in that deep-lying role but at times he can be exploited while Gundogan has had his injury problems throughout his career.

Llorente has a quite matured vision of the game and his stint with Alaves has developed him into a more mature player. He likes to sit deep and loves to steer the game from there. His break up play and ability to initiate attack would be a pretty good addition to the City squad.

Llorente is unlikely to be given fresh terms unless he shows some extraordinary moves and if Guardiola is to move for him he has to act very fast.

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