Manchester City are the youngest participant in the transfer race for Ajax star Noussair Mazraoui.
Noussair Mazraoui, 24, has been a mainstay of Erik Ten Hag’s Ajax squad this season. He scored three goals and provided four assists in 16 games in all competitions. The Moroccan international’s contract with the Eredivisie club expires at the end of the season and with no deal struck, the certainty is that he will leave the club on a free transfer.
The 24-year-old full-back’s eye-catching appearances this season, as well as his contract situation, have attracted great interest from clubs across Europe. Manchester City have now joined Arsenal and Leeds United, among others, to pursue Mazraoui, who climbed the ranks at Ajax after joining the academy at the age of nine.
Man City’s Kyle Walker needs competition and coverage
Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola is well-stocked when it comes to full-back unit but lacks quality cover.
Joao Cancelo has been great as a left-back this season, showing off his attacking and defensive skills alike. The Portuguese full-back excelled in Manchester City’s 2-0 derby win against Manchester United earlier this month, providing assists for both goals.
Guardiola’s penchant for playing Cancelo as a left-back has made Kyle Walker the only recognized option in the right-back. Walker, like Cancelo, offers a lot up front while being solid defensively and his consistency for the Sky Blues since signing Tottenham in 2017 has been impressive.
Not to forget, the England international will turn 32 in May. So it’s not a bad idea for Guardiola to take some pressure off Walker by signing a quality right-back.
Noussair Mazraoui would be a great addition to the Sky Blues
Noussair Mazraoui is a highly rated full-back who has done very well for Ajax since joining the senior squad five seasons ago and has played over 100 games for the Eredivisie giants.
The 24-year-old likes to bomb the right flank up and down and creates opportunities for his teammates with short, crisp passes or cross passages. He’s a solid player who is a progressive passer, has a good pace, and has the versatility to act in midfield when needed. The Moroccan has also honed his defensive game under Ten Hag in recent seasons.
As an attacking full-back and reading the game well, Mazraoui is a perfect fit for Manchester City. He will be without a contract with Ajax in 2022 and at the age of 24 could bring the Cityzens many seasons at the highest level. The Moroccan international would delve into an important area of Guardiola’s side while serving as Walker’s long-term successor as right-back.
On a possible free transfer next summer, Mazraoui would represent a massive coup for Man City if they can convince him to turn down and join other clubs.
I’m Rohan Sengupta from one of the busiest cities in India, Mumbai. As a qualified journalist and sports enthusiast, I simply cannot do without football and I write, discuss and analyze the game 24/7.