According to a recent report by Le10 Sport (translated by Leicestershire Live), Manchester City have found an ideal alternative to Harry Maguire and are now being linked with Barcelona centre-back Samuel Umtiti ahead of a potential move this summer. The same source has also revealed that the Spanish champions could be willing to let the French defender leave if they receive an offer of €60m in this off-season.
Umtiti’s Frustrations At The Nou Camp Last Season
The France international was a sporadic option for the Catalan giants last season. He missed a major chunk of the previous campaign after injuring his knee which has also derailed his career in Spanish football. Hence, he might welcome a change of scenery this summer with Barca going through a transitional period after missing out on the UEFA Champions League trophy once again in the last term.
The 25-year-old featured in 15 matches for Ernesto Valverde’s team on all fronts last season. The ex-Olympique Lyonnais defensive ace is in dire need of more game time so that he can prove his worth at the highest level. Umtiti will not be guaranteed regular first-team starts at the Camp Nou anymore following the recent emergence of Clement Lenglet.
On the defensive end, Umtiti made an average of 0.6 tackles, 1.3 interceptions and 1.9 clearances per game in the Spanish top-flight last season (stats via whoscored). The Barca prospect has also secured 31 caps for France and has registered four goals for them thus far.
What Will The 2018 FIFA World Cup Winner Bring To The Etihad Stadium?
Umtiti has shown tremendous athleticism whenever he steps on the field. The French centre-half is a powerhouse in defence as he boasts remarkable strength which enables him to win most of his aerial duels.
He can also be a significant threat from set-pieces on the offensive end of the pitch. The Barca talent has a good football brain and can make some vital interceptions for his side.
The former Ligue 1 prospect is a commanding presence inside his own box and often dominates his penalty area with authority and conviction. The potential addition of Umtiti will bolster Pep Guardiola’s defensive options significantly at the Etihad Stadium. He will not only provide more competition for John Stones, Aymeric Laporte and Nicolas Otamendi but will also improve Man City’s squad depth for years to come.
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