Who is Man City target Junior Firpo? The perfect left-back for Guardiola?
Reports from the Mirror have revealed that Manchester City will be chasing Real Betis star Junior Firpo, as they look to reinforce their squad for the post-January title push. Injuries have played a major part in their season so far, with Kevin De Bruyne only just returning but it’s defensive problems that have halted Manchester City.
Benjamin Mendy is still out injured until the beginning of February and while Danilo has recovered, the former Real Madrid man will need time to adjust.
That’s why it’s no surprise that the Citizens are after Firpo; especially given the 22-year-old’s ability to play as a centre-back, left-wing back and in his natural position, as a left-back.
Moreover, Firpo’s athleticism combined with his aggressive style of play makes the youngster the perfect left-back target for Pep Guardiola. Add to that the fact that he’s only 22 years old and will keep getting better with age, it simply adds to his value.
The Dominican international only made his debut last February for Betis but has since matured and flourished under manager Quique Setien, making 15 appearances this season.
His stats have improved too, with the left-back scoring 3 goals but it’s his defensive contributions that have really changed, and the 22-year-old looks like a force to reckon with.
He has averaged 1.7 tackles and clearances per game, plus averaging 1 interception per game according to Whoscored. In comparison, Benjamin Mendy has averaged 1.4 tackles, 1.6 clearances and 1 interception per game, but in fewer appearances in the Premier League though.
And if statistics are any measure to go by, then Firpo will become one of the best in his position, but where would he go next? If the 22-year-old hasn’t realised yet, his time at Real Betis is coming to an end, especially with Real Madrid (h/t Sky Sports), Newcastle United and Crystal Palace among the clubs looking to get him.
However, if Manchester City do win the race for the youngster, Firpo should take to the Premier League like a fish to water, similar to what Benjamin Mendy did when he first arrived. His athleticism combined with his enthusiasm and ability with the ball will make him an asset to any side he joins.