A Summer of Change: Manchester City and the Pursuit of Achraf Hakimi
As the Premier League gears up for another high-stakes summer of transfers, it is Manchester City who once again are planning major squad changes. In a striking development, sources from Football Insider suggest that City have identified PSG fullback Achraf Hakimi as a viable replacement for the outgoing Kyle Walker.
A New Home for Hakimi?
The allure of the Etihad Stadium, and the prospect of playing under Pep Guardiola, have reportedly caught Hakimi’s attention. Known for his electric pace and versatile defensive capabilities, the Moroccan international could provide the dynamism Guardiola often seeks in his fullbacks.
However, prising Hakimi away from the French Champions won’t be an easy task. PSG are expected to demand a hefty fee for the fullback, although it seems that Manchester City are prepared to pay a premium for bolstering their right-back position.
The Kyle Walker Dilemma
Kyle Walker’s expected move to Bayern Munich has accelerated Manchester City’s search for a new right-back. The England international has been a cornerstone of Guardiola’s defence, but he’s reportedly expressed a desire for a new challenge in Germany, even verbally agreeing to terms over a potential deal.
This summer-long aspiration to rejuvenate their defensive options has led Manchester City to draw up a shortlist that not only includes Hakimi but also Benjamin Pavard, who currently plies his trade at Bayern.
Hakimi or Pavard: A Question of Preference
The potential for Pavard to become part of a swap deal in Walker’s move to Bayern adds an interesting wrinkle to the transfer saga. This could stall any progress on a deal for Hakimi, with City potentially prioritising the Frenchman as their first option.
Hakimi’s desire to showcase his abilities in the Premier League and specifically under Guardiola is evident, but it seems his future might hinge on City’s final decision concerning Pavard.
Manchester City’s Busy Summer
The reigning Premier League champions have already been active in the transfer market, bolstering their squad with the addition of Matteo Kovacic. Furthermore, they’re reportedly edging closer to a world record deal for defender Joško Gvardiol.
Despite his stellar performance for PSG in the 2022/23 season, with four goals and five assists from 36 appearances across all competitions, Hakimi’s future remains a subject of intense speculation.
In the high-stakes world of Premier League transfers, every decision can have a lasting impact on the season ahead. As Manchester City weigh up their options, the prospect of seeing Hakimi dart down the right flank at the Etihad is undoubtedly an exciting one for City fans. But, as with all transfers, only time will tell if this potential move will come to fruition.