Manchester City

Manchester City

Premier League • England

Man City rivalling Real Madrid for world class star who’d replace declining Guardiola favourite

PSG right-back Achraf Hakimi, Man City right-back Kyle Walker

Manchester City are emerging as a credible contender to sign PSG superstar Achraf Hakimi, though stiff competition will come from Real Madrid, according to a report.

Pep Guardiola’s side came within a whisker of needing to sign a new right-back last summer. Kyle Walker was a concrete target for Bayern Munich and the England international subsequently admitted he came close to making the move.

“It was close,” said Walker after the summer window closed. “It was close but in football, things can happen. Decisions can be made. Things can turn. It wasn’t meant to be.

“Would I have enjoyed the experience? Of course I would have done. But this club is a great club and you can’t underestimate what this club has done in the last six or seven years.”

Walker ultimately went on to sign a contract extension that tied his future to the Etihad until 2026.

However, the pacy 33-year-old has not been at his unbeatable best this season, with many a goal Man City have conceded coming when forwards have cut inside the right-back before firing beyond Ederson into the far corner.

Walker will turn 34 ahead of the summer and despite retaining his lightning quick pace, City must look to the future at some stage.

Now, according to Spanish outlet AS (as cited by Sport Witness), City have set their sights on Achraf Hakimi to eventually take Walker’s place.

Hakimi can do what Walker can’t

The Morocco ace, 25, is unquestionably among the world’s best right-backs at present. Walker is too, though the Hakimi can do what Walker can’t.

Hakimi offers tangible end product and is just as effective going forward as he is at defending his own box.

Indeed, Hakimi has returned nine goal contributions in 25 matches for PSG this season. He’s scored nine goals in 73 appearances for his country and has terrorised opposing sides’ left flanks dating back to his Borussia Dortmund days.

Hakimi rose to prominence while loaned to the German side from Real Madrid between 2018-20. Per AS, Real Madrid are also in the mix for Hakimi’s signature.

But whether a transfer is viable this summer or whether it’ll have to wait a season or two beyond that remains to be seen.

AS concluded that for the time being at least, Hakimi is content in Paris and wouldn’t angle for an exit.

As such, it’ll take some convincing for City or Real Madrid to pull off what would unquestionably be a stellar transfer coup this summer.

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