The possibility of a major transfer saga developing between Real Madrid and Premier League powerhouse, Manchester City looms on the horizon. Both clubs have expressed interest in Real Betis’ young left back, Junior Firpo and seem willing to go toe-to-toe for his signature.
Although muscle injuries have blighted his season to an extent, Firpo’s thrilling performances haven’t gone unnoticed. The Spanish under-21 international is equally adept at attacking the flanks as he is defending them. An imposing physical presence, the youngster is tremendous in the air which allied to his ability to cover ground easily, makes him an enticing prospect.
The Spanish sports weekly, Don Balon, who first broke the story reports that the 22-year-old has a €50 million release clause attached to his name, state that Manchester City are set to fight for Firpo with Real Madrid. Although a steep price to pay for a lad of only 22, offering a player in exchange might push the Betis directors to lower his price.
The report puts the Premier League side as frontrunners for his signature. Pep Guardiola’s options at left back are rather sparse. Benjamin Mendy’s persistent fitness concerns have kept him out of action for long periods.
In his stead, Pep has experimented with Zinchenko and Delph, to limited success. Although midfielders by trade, the Catalan has successfully retrained them to shuttle between midfield and left back depending on the phase of play. However, the former Barcelona manager is reportedly an admirer of Firpo and is willing to lure him into Manchester.
While Florentino Perez has been sizing up the Betis sensation, quite possibly as a relay for Marcelo, Zidane’s return and the emergence of Reguilon has tempered their instincts. Further, the report suggests Zidane is keen on more diverse options, preferably with greater experience.
Regardless, it remains to be seen if Betis can hold onto Firpo for much longer.
FOX Sports Asia Probability Rating: 2/5; Don Balon is anything but the most reliable source for transfer rumours. A wicked concoction of baseless rumours and idle fantasies, it is advisable to stay clear of their regular drivel. Yet one never knows, strange as this world is.