Julian Alvarez names two players who ‘surprised’ him after completing Man City transfer – Manchester Evening News

Striker Julian Alvarez has admitted that he was taken aback by the quality of team-mates Ilkay Gundogan and Kevin De Bruyne following his move to Manchester City.

City announced the signing of Alvarez back in January, singing him on a five-and-a-half-year deal. However, he remained at former club River Plate on loan for the remainder of the 2021/22 season, before arriving in England for the start of pre-season.

The versatile forward, who has notched three goals in all competitions so far this season, first met up with his team-mates at the start of pre-season, rubbing shoulders with some of the world’s biggest names for the first time. It promised to be a special occasion for the 22-year-old and he has now admitted that it was the talent of both Gundogan and De Bruyne that caught his eye most.

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Alvarez, speaking to City’s club website, said: “There are a lot of good players here, all of them play beautiful football. Skilful football.

“The first days [at the club] I told my family I was very surprised by Ilkay and Kevin for how he controls the ball and how he moves in small spaces and his technical skillset. I’ve always said I wanted to play with the best players in the world.

“Well now here at Manchester City but that goes for the national team as well. With the vast majority of players playing here in Europe, you learn a lot. Not just watching them but also sharing the pitch with them.”

Alvarez, who is currently away on international duty with his native Argentina, has started just once since joining the club, starting and scoring twice in the 6-0 win over Nottingham Forest at the end of August. Such is the competitiveness and strength in depth manager Pep Guardiola has available to him in attacking areas, opportunities have not been as forthcoming for the forward as he would have necessarily hoped for.

Nevertheless, he has welcomed the level of competition that is in place, adding: “In every team there is internal competition, but healthy competition like is always said. It is always good to compete and to share the locker room with the best players in the world.

“In your position because you learn, and you grow a lot. And I’m here to do those things.”

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