Premier League champions Manchester City have confirmed their first January signing, securing the services of Julian Alvarez in a €17 million deal.

Manchester City have made an official statement to confirm that they have secured the services of Julian Alvarez on a five-and-a-half-year deal running until June 30, 2027. River Plate will receive an initial €17 million from the Premier League champions for him, with the Argentine striker set to return to Buenos Aires on a short-term loan deal.

Julian Alvarez became one of the most highly sought-after attackers in the game on the back of a scintillating 2021 campaign with River Plate. The 22-year-old was the leading light for the Argentine giants in their triumphant league campaign, amassing 24 goals and 15 assists in 46 outings across all competitions last term.

The youngster’s exploits for River Plate were duly noticed by some of the biggest clubs in Europe, and widespread reports claimed that marquee outfits like Barcelona and Real Madrid were keen on signing him. But the two La Liga heavyweights have conceded defeat to Manchester City in the race to sign Alvarez.

The youngster fits in the mould of attacking players that Pep Guardiola cherishes to utilise in his teams. Capable of playing across the frontline while maintaining a healthy scoring rate, Alvarez can usurp Gabriel Jesus if he can remain prolific upon his arrival to Manchester City.

But as part of Manchester City’s agreement with River Plate, Alvarez will not arrive at the Etihad until June. The Argentine champions will keep the 22-year-old on loan for the first half of their season, meaning the player will don the Manchester City blue officially for the maiden occasion right in time for the 2022/23 campaign to kick off.

Upon completing the deal, Manchester City Director of Football Txiki Begiristain expressed his delight, saying, “Julian is a player we have monitored for some time. He is capable of operating in a number of attacking roles, and we firmly believe he’s one of the best young attacking players in South America.

“I am so happy we have managed to bring him to Manchester City. I really believe we can provide him with the right conditions to fulfil his potential and become a top player.”

According to the ever-reliable Fabrizio Romano, River Plate will receive an initial €17 million from Manchester City for Alvarez, with an additional €1.5 million constituting add-ons. It will be interesting to see if the Argentine international can reproduce the goods at the Etihad once he finally arrives at Manchester City.

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