Former Liverpool player Stephane Henchoz has praised compatriot Manuel Akanji, suggesting he could play for Manchester United or Liverpool in the future.
The transfer window slammed shut more than a week ago and saw some huge deals being done by top clubs. Despite a pandemic hit market, big clubs were able to spend considerable money on preferred targets, and the Premier League topped other leagues in terms of spending.
While there was a huge demand for central defenders in the window, a notable player was surprisingly never mentioned in the same bracket as the big clubs. Manuel Akanji, still at Borussia Dortmund, did not particularly register on the radar of top sides, despite his evident quality in defence.
The Swiss international had a terrific Euros and has displayed solid form with Dortmund in recent seasons. Akanji has become a sure starter for the German side. Henchoz even suggests that Akanji might be better than new Manchester United signing Raphael Varane and PSG star Presnl Kimpembe, possibly referring to the clash between France and Switzerland.
However, Stephane Henchoz believes that Akanji’s reputation may not be that prominent owing to him playing at Dortmund and in the German league. The defender signed from Swiss side FC Basel in 2018 and has made more than 120 appearances for BVB. Still only 26, the centre-back has a bright future, according to Henchoz and could play for some of the biggest clubs, including Manchester United or Liverpool.
Speaking to German publication Blick, Henchoz explained his assessment of Akanji, stating he could play for one of the top-10 clubs in the world.
Henchoz said, “Everyone has spoken of world champion Varane and PSG player Kimpembe against France, but Akanji was the best. He just doesn’t have the name internationally because he only plays in Dortmund. He may be the only Swiss who can play in a top 10 side one day. Liverpool, Bayern, Manchester City or Manchester United, Barcelona, Real – I trust him, he has all the qualities.”
Akanji is a player entering his prime years and could be a terrific addition to any of the top sides in Europe, especially the Premier League. It was quite surprising that despite having only two years left on his deal, Dortmund were not pushing to sell him, considering they are a selling club by the business. The Swiss star could be a future addition to one of the big sides and should essentially fit any style.