Saturday, January 29, 2022

Manchester City Defender Is On AC Milan’s Radar This January: Should Pep Let Him Go?

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Abhinab Ghosh
A 26-year-old sports writer and an aspiring football coach who has road-tripped across the Scottish Highlands, but has never been to Wales. Sucker for cliff-hangers and catchy riffs. Known to be a grunger and not to be a stranger.

In a recent print edition, Corriere della Sera revealed that Manchester City defender is on AC Milan’s radar during this January transfer window. It is understood that the Italian outfit are eyeing the Man City centre-back as a replacement for Simon Kjaer who suffered a knee ligament injury which could rule him out for the rest of this campaign.

Ake’s Season Of Mixed Emotions In English Football

Ake has played a sporadic role for the Mancunian side this season but has done well to establish himself as a useful player in Pep Guardiola’s squad. The Dutch defensive ace has been involved in 14 matches for his current employers during this campaign, netting two goals in the process on all fronts.

The 26-year-old has been good on the ball but has struggled to find consistency at the back based on his average of 0.6 tackles, 0.4 interceptions and 1.9 clearances per game in the Premier League. He has even been tidy when distributing possession from the back after completing 91.8% of his attempted passes in league football (stats via whoscored).

Manchester City (Nathan Ake)
MANCHESTER, ENGLAND – OCTOBER 16: Nathan Ake of Manchester City during the Premier League match between Manchester City and Burnley at Etihad Stadium on October 16, 2021 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images)
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Should Manchester City Let Ake Go This Month?

Ake can get stuck in with some solid tackles to make life difficult for the opposition attackers. He has got good defensive awareness and can earn possession back for his side on the defensive end of the pitch. The Dutch sensation doesn’t mind clearing his lines when required and is even proficient at playing his way out from the back.

However, Ake has often found himself behind Aymeric Laporte and Ruben Dias in Pep Guardiola‘s pecking order this season. Thus, it makes sense for the player to seal a move away from the Etihad Stadium in search of regular first-team starts in the future.

As far as Man City are concerned, they simply cannot afford to lose Ake as he remains an integral member of Guardiola’s match-day squad. The Mancunian giants need to retain their best squad players if they are compete for multiple trophies in the second half of this campaign. Thus, Guardiola should not consider letting Ake go during this winter transfer period as he could still play a key role for the Premier League leaders over the next few months.

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