Manchester City have reportedly reached an agreement in principle with River Plate to sign attacking sensation Julian Alvarez.

According to an Argentine news outlet, Ole, Manchester City have made a big stride in their pursuit of Julian Alvarez. The Premier League champions have a deal in place with River Plate to complete an €18 million transfer. Alvarez is set to remain at River Plate until June before arriving at the Etihad in the summer.

A native of Calchin, Alvarez is widely regarded as one of the most gifted young prospects in the Argentine top-flight. Part of the River Plate senior team since early 2019, the striker has already notched up almost 100 competitive appearances for the club, racking up 36 goals and 25 assists.

Although a centre-forward by trade, the 21-year-old has earned rave reviews for his all-round gameplay. Standing at just 1.70m, the youngster utilises his small centre of gravity to squeeze through tight spaces and has an excellent sense of positioning. He is also blessed with technical prowess that allows him to seamlessly link up with teammates in the final third.

In many ways, Alvarez’s style of play resembles his fellow countryman and Manchester City legend Sergio Aguero. So it is no wonder that Manchester City have left no stones unturned in their €18 million pursuit of the River Plate striker, especially after the January exit of star player Ferran Torres.

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The Spanish international joined Barcelona earlier this month, further leaving Pep Guardiola devoid of a proper number nine. Although the Manchester City manager is willing to spend the remainder of the season without a recognised forward, the Citizens are expected to splash the cash on a top-class striker next summer.

In fact, Julian Alvarez might be brought in as a mere backup for a new and far more conventional centre-forward. The reigning English champions have reportedly rekindled their pursuit of Harry Kane, while Borussia Dortmund starlet Erling Haaland remains an option as well.

As for Alvarez, it remains to be seen how the forward develops at River Plate over the course of the next six months. The youngster has enjoyed immense success in his homeland and will be itching to join the Etihad camp in the summer as he looks to take the next step in his career. There is a possibility his loan can be extended beyond June, but it remains unlikely given Manchester City’s chronic need for a number nine.

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