After an abysmal FA Cup semi-final defeat to Arsenal, it’s time to check out four centre-backs that could ease Manchester City’s defensive woes.
Vincent Kompany’s departure last summer left a gaping hole in the Manchester City defence, which has yet to be filled.
Pep Guardiola would no doubt like to fix that before next month’s Champions League clash against Real Madrid, who recently dethroned Barcelona as La Liga champions. So it’s fair to expect Los Blancos will be on a high.
Not helping matters was City’s woeful performance in Saturday’s 2-0 FA Cup semi-final defeat to Arsenal. It not only ended hopes of a domestic double, but left their problems in defence exposed.
So let’s check out four possible centre-backs who could help City out next season.
Caglar Soyuncu – Leicester City
The 24-year-old has stepped up wonderfully to the plate for Leicester following Harry Maguire’s move to Manchester United last summer. He’s settled in seamlessly and won plenty of plaudits.
Alongside ex-United defender Johnny Evans, Soyuncu has helped establish the Foxes as top-four contenders in the Premier League. In fact, he’s been a rock all season for Brendan Rodgers.
Not only is Soyuncu good in the air, but he’s also got pace and is always composed on the ball.
Will Leicester allow him to leave so soon after Maguire’s exit, though? If so, City will probably have to compensate them handsomely.
Milan Skriniar – Inter Milan
Pep Guardiola is a known admirer of Skriniar, and who can blame him either?
The Slovakia international has helped transform Inter into title contenders this season. In fact, the Nerazzurri boast the Serie A’s best defensive record on 34 goals conceded in 33 games.
Signing Skriniar would certainly bring some steel into Guardiola’s defence, and he could serve well alongside Aymeric Laporte in Manchester.
Although Antonio Conte wouldn’t be keen on a sale, which may force City to offer a substantial amount of money.
Ruben Dias – Benfica
One young defender that reports have strongly linked Manchester City with recently is Ruben Dias.
The 23-year-old is the latest young player to make his mark at Benfica and is already established in the Portuguese national team, winning 17 caps at international level. And this season has probably been his most impressive yet.
Dias has been a rock in the Benfica defence, missing only one league game all season because of suspension. He is the full package in being big, strong, good in the air, and capable of positioning himself in the right place at the right time.
His good potential and young age should make him even more appealing for Guardiola.
The 24-year-old has often been linked to former Manchester City player Jerome Boateng in the past, mostly for their similar backgrounds at Hamburg and shared defensive abilities.
And Tah could fit the bill at the Etihad Stadium. He’s a typical Guardiola-type defender with that special ability to the ball with his feet, who averaged the ninth-best record in the Bundesliga for successfully completed passes at 90%.
His is love for physical and aerial challenges alone would make him a hit in the English top-flight.
Moreover, Tah has also found his opportunities at Bayer Leverkusen restricted of late. Head coach Peter Bosz has favoured Sven Bender and January signing Edmond Tapsoba instead.