Julian Alvarez: moved to Man City for PS14m in January, but he stayed at River Plate. The Argentine striker is expected to link up with Premier League champions later in the summer for pre-season. River won their 8-1 Copa Libertadores victory this week. Much of Manchester City’s transfer discussion this summer will revolve around how Erling Harland settles into his new role at Etihad Stadium. Imagine if he and Haaland hit purple patches together for City this season.
Julian Alvarez will link up with City in the summer to do pre-season training. So what can Pep Guardiola’s fans expect from his new striker?
Julian Alvarez will arrive in Man City in amazing form
Man City fans were not in doubt about Alvarez’s superiority, as they were shocked by Julian Alvarez six-goal victory against Allianz Lima at the Copa Libertadores.
The 22-year old has scored 14 goals in 17 cup competition appearances this season, in addition to the 18 goals he scored during the 2021 Argentinian top flight.
He is the first striker in the club’s history of 121 years to score six goals in one game. If he is able to get in, he will also be looking for Manchester City records.
Man United and Real Madrid are long-term supporters of him
Alvarez is a target of Manchester City, but the forward was always on the radars of Europe’s elite.He was 11 years old when he spent a month in Real Madrid’s youth academy.A result of the trial did not lead to a move, partly due to Spanish age restrictions. However, he was eventually picked up by River Plate in Argentina, which is the same club he had supported as a child.
Ralf Rang nick, former interim manager of Manchester United, was also interested in moving him to Old Trafford during the January transfer window. However, the club’s board turned down a request for a striker.
River’s Julian Alvarez is still in great form and Premier League club City has already received loan offers from the young forward. However, the plan is to keep him at Etihad Stadium next year. Ferrand Soriano, City sporting director, stated this month: “We’ve had many offers from clubs to lend Julian Alvarez — but he isn’t going anywhere.”He will do pre-season with me and I believe he will stay. Barcelona was not interested.”
He has already worked with Messi
Julian Alvarez was a strong youth player for River Plate, as well as internationally for Argentina. In the summer 2018, he was one of the young players that travelled with Argentina’s senior team to Russia for training sessions.
Alvarez gained valuable experience from rubbing shoulders with Sergio Aguero, Lionel Messi and other players. He was promoted to the first team squad by Marcelo Gallardo, a long-serving manager.
Alvarez was handed the No 9 jersey and made his debut in October 2018. Gallardo said that Julian Alvarez was a player every manager would love to coach. He described the youngster as a “team player” who has a positive attitude and a great talent.
Julian Alvarez began to play regularly for River soon after and, seven years later, was allowed to stand out at Bernabeu in the Copa Libertadores final against Boca Juniors.
Gallardo made a big bet that River would beat bitter rivals 3-1 to lift the trophy.
Alvarez has been compared to Aguero
Alvarez has always admired Aguero. “I like Kun Aguero and I try to mimic his movements,” he stated in a 2019 interview with La Nacion. A move to the Etihad Stadium would allow him to continue in the footsteps of his former international team-mate.
Although it would be impossible to duplicate his accomplishments, the comparisons to the City legend can be made.
Julian Alvarez is 5ft 8ins tall, and like Aguero, he’s deceptively fast. His stocky build and low centre gravity make it difficult for him to push the ball off.
Aguero is often referred to as a goal-poacher, but he scored many goals for City. A breakdown of Alvarez’s Primera Division goals last season for River shows similar diversity.
Alvarez converted most of his goals inside the box.
There were four from within the six-yard box, which underlines his goal-poaching skills. But there were five from outside.The division had no other players who managed more than three. This statistic underlines his threat from both close-range and distance.Alvarez is a powerhouse on his right foot. He generates impressive power and has minimal back-lift. However, he is not one-footed. He is also strong on his left foot, scoring five of his 18 goals with his weaker foot last season.
Even his head was part of the goal. Julian Alvarez is small but tall, and like Aguero is very dangerous in the air. His combative nature ensures that he doesn’t shy away from taking on aerial challenges. However, what sets him apart is his positional versatility. Alvarez plays up front for River, but he’s not an all-round striker like Aguero. He is actually equally effective from the right, having spent his youth as a winger.
Alvarez, while Aguero was a good player in and around the penalty area, has a tendency to drop into the spaces between the lines. He can pick up possession on the turn, and then use his speed and skill against opposition defenders who are from deeper positions.
It is yet to be seen if he can even match the incredible standards set by his idol. Julian Alvarez star power is already evident.
What has the opinion of experts about Alvarez?
Pep Guardiola, Manchester City manager, speaks in February
Manchester City works to be present, but also to look into the future. Although he could be here right now, we have so many players that it is best for him to remain in River Plate.
He has done a lot with Marcelo Gallardo over the years and will be back with us in the next preseason. We will then decide what happens, as the squads change in each pre-season. We are thrilled to have this young, talented player for the next few years. Sky Sports News will feature Tim Vickery, a South American football expert, in January
He is “the best thing to come out Argentine football for a while – he is a really talented support striker. Marcelo Gallardo, River Plate coach, has taken him along.
Nos vemos esta noche en Chihuahua para dar el grito pic.twitter.com/12cgILL583
— Julion Alvarez (@julionalvarez) September 15, 2022
He reminds me of Gary Shaw, [former Aston Villa striker], who was a great player from the 1980s up until he suffered a serious injury. He reminded me of Kenny Dalglish in England. Julian Alvarez shares some of these attributes. He’s great at playing the pass, taking the ball on the half-turn, and getting into position.
Julian Alvarez can play right up there, but if he moves to Europe, he will have to adjust physically. He has real talent and his movements are quick, but his mind is faster. He is a truly special player.