City’s new target has Marq of a Champion
PSG’s 20-year-old centre back Marquinhos could emerge as a target for Manchester City, after the French champions admitted they may be willing to listen to offers for the Brazilian.
Laurent Blanc’s side, who are 14/1 to win next term’s Champions League, have signed David Luiz from Chelsea for £40m already this summer, a move that could see Marquinhos slide down the pecking order at the Parc des Princes. Having sealed a switch from Roma only a year ago, for £27m, he has been unable to break into the first XI with Blanc preferring Alex, who could join AC Milan this summer, and Thiago Silva in the middle of the back four.
City meanwhile, were often caught out in defence this season, with the only weak link in the team seeming to be whoever partnered captain Vincent Kompany in the centre of defence. Although manager Manuel Pellegrini, brought in Martin Demichellis last summer, in what was probably seen as a faithful retainer, the Chilean’s judgement appears to have been clouded by loyalty. The rugged Argentine centre back no doubt has quality, and was recalled by is country for the World Cup, however his lack of pace was at fault for a number of City’s conceded goals.
Marquinhos showed at Roma that he has world class potential, however his lack of game time this campaign meant he was overlooked by Luiz Felipe Scolari for the Brazil World Cup squad. His time will come. Pellegrini has shown his willingness to give youth a chance, after playing Matija Nastasic, 21, at times also alongside Kompany.
He could well be the missing piece in the jigsaw for the Premier League champions, who are 7/4 to retain their title next season. They could well face stiff competition from Barcelona, who under new coach Luis Enrique are in the process of rebuilding, and need to replace former club stalwart Carles Puyol at the heart of their defence.