Why Raphinha is perfect for Manchester City

Embed from Getty Images

If there is one team in the Premier League who are not in need of new players, it’s Manchester City. Already with many of the world’s best at their disposal, Guardiola has free range to rotate his squad as he pleases. But one Premier League star certainly stands out as being a perfect fit for the Citizens in the future, and one who could easily be their next Riyad Mahrez type. That man would be Brazilian wing wizard Raphinha, who’s starred for Marcelo Bielsa’s Leeds since joining in October 2020. While a move for Raphinha wouldn’t be necessary to fix any gaping hole in their team, it would be a shrewd piece of business to improve their squad in the long-run.

RAPHINHA’S KEY CHARACTERSTICS

Embed from Getty Images

Raphinha is one of the silkiest dribblers in the Premier League, but one with an added goal threat. He possesses many of the same qualities as one of City’s older members – Riyad Mahrez, with exceptional dribbling, long-range shooting ability and a two-footedness that makes him very difficult to stop from the right wing. Guardiola likes for his wingers to hug the touchline and stay wide, where Raphinha often does his best work. The City manager also likes for his wingers to cut inside onto their stronger foot, which is something that Raphinha also does frequently for Leeds. Exceptional with both his right and left foot, the 25-year-old all 8 of his total goals with his left-foot this season. He’s also dribbled past 43 players this season, the third highest in the league.

Meanwhile, in Pep’s desire for versatility, the Leeds man makes for a more useful option than someone like Mahrez. Raphinha can play as an attacking midfielder, particularly alongside another number ten in a three-man midfield, and could easily fit into City’s midfield line as a robust, box to box midfielder.

The one problem for the 25-year-old in staking a claim to play for City – his pass completion rate is abysmal. City are obviously a side who like to keep possession of the ball, and the Brazilian’s 69% pass completion rate won’t cut it. Raphinha is fine making short passes, but he tries to pull off something elaborate far too much. Guardiola would need to improve Raphinha’s passing ability to get him to gel with the others, and help him learn when to make risky passes and play it forward, versus when to play it safe. That said, his defensive work rate is exceptional, he knows how and when to press, and he’s a quality goal-scorer that can add a bit of dynamism and flair when City need an extra cutting edge.

So while many people look at City and say they should sign a new striker. We think the top priority is actually to find a Riyad Mahrez replacement, with the Algerian being one of the few players in the squad now over the age of 30. Raphinha could be a brilliant replacement option for the next five years or so, and allow City to ease Cole Palmer into the team. As mentioned, the Brazilian could then also play in midfield, which would be excellent for City’s rotation policy.

With a current market value of just 40 million, City would get their money’s worth out of the hard-working Brazilian, and improve their squad in the process. With Leeds already struggling to reach the heights they achieved in 2020-21, Raphinha will likely be looking for a new challenge anyway. So we suggest City splash the cash on the wing wizard, and continue to use a false nine up front.


So there it is! Why Raphinha is a perfect fit for Manchester City. Be sure to check out more in this series below, and follow on social media @mastermindsite. Thanks for reading and see you soon!

Processing…
Success! You're on the list.

YOU MIGHT ALSO ENJOY…

Analyzing Southampton’s transfer window so far

Ralph Hasenhüttl’s Southampton have been drooling for some fresh faces the past few seasons, and this summer looks set to be the one where they finally get their wish and make their much anticipated moves. With six signings already confirmed and two 16 year-olds also on the way from North London, you’d think Southampton were about done for this window. However, with the arrival of a new sporting director and head of recruitment in the form of Rasmus Ankersen and Joe Shields respectively, the Saints could be in for an exhilarating ride before the clock strikes 11pm on September 1st. Here is our analysis of Southampton’s summer window so far, ahead of the 2022-23 Premier League season.

Why Gabriel Jesus is perfect for Arsenal

Gabriel Jesus arrives at Arsenal Football Club as the complete package, capable of fulfilling a number of different roles and tasks. Not only is the Brazilian a competent creator and scorer of great goals, he is also a highly active contributor both in and out of possession. Jesus catches the eye in not only 1v1 situations where he can use his pace and power to explode away from defenders, but in stellar perceptions of space to find pockets to receive and work his way around defensive blocks.

Where should Premier League clubs sign players?

Ahead of the start of the 2022-23 season, we endeavoured to answer the question – where should Premier League clubs sign players? In the process of doing our Premier League Transfer Tax study, we’ve identified a series of trends that existed within Premier League clubs last season, that can help to inform the business of teams moving forward – including questions of where to sign players. Here is our final piece to this four-part puzzle.

Diyaeddine Abzi – Player Analysis

After an electric start to the 2022 Canadian Premier League season, Diyaeddine Abzi has officially been transferred from York United all the way to Ligue 2’s Pau FC in France. After finishing 10th in Ligue 2 last season, Pau FC were in the market for reinforcements to their team, and Diyaeddine Abzi provides an excellent overall package to excel at his new club. We examine why Pau FC took a chance on the Canadian youngster, and the potential for Abzi to excel at his new club.

3 thoughts on “Why Raphinha is perfect for Manchester City

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s