Attention switches to international football with Premier League stars linking up with their nations this week.
Manchester City have 11 players reporting for friendlies and opening fixtures in the new UEFA Nations League. Kyle Walker, Fabian Delph and John Stones are all set to feature for England against Spain and Switzerland while Bernardo Silva couldn’t help Portugal defeat Croatia on Thursday.
The 32-year-old has been a critical player for the Citizens during their years of success under Sheikh Mansour. Kompany has racked up over 330 appearances for the Blues but has less than one year remaining on his current deal. Reports suggest City will wait until the end of the season to offer fresh terms to the veteran.
As Kompany is approaching the twilight of his career, Pep Guardiola could use the January transfer window to source a long-term replacement. The perfect signing would be Stuttgart defender – Benjamin Pavard. Valued at £36m by Transfermarkt, the 22-year-old enjoyed a terrific breakthrough season in the Bundesliga, making 34 appearances, before starring in France’s capture of the World Cup in Russia. His sensational goal against Argentina was eventually voted as the goal of the tournament.
Pavard is a modern-day centre-back who would fit perfectly into Guardiola’s system at the Etihad. The Frenchman completed 83% of his passes from the back last season and City’s wingers could thrive with Pavard averaging 3.2 long passes per game last season. Not only does the youngster excel with the ball at his feet, but he also reads the game expertly, and no defender in the Bundesliga made more interceptions last season (WhoScored).
Working close to Kompany and under Guardiola for the rest of the season would do wonders for his development. Pavard has the potential to be one of the best defenders in the world and City must secure his services before their rivals beat them to it.
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