After one of the most convincing performances of the Manuel Pellegrini era at Manchester City, it appears that everything is going according to plan at the Etihad. With two wins in two games, including a 3-0 thrashing of current Barclays Premier League champions Chelsea, City is riding high at this early point in the season. With an attack full of international superstars, many expected City to score goals for fun this season, but questions needed to be answered at the back.
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Despite the fact that the club has only played two games, the center back duo of Vincent Kompany and Eliaquim Mangala have not given up a goal in either contest. With the pair growing in confidence every week, it is hard to imagine breaking up the pairing anytime soon. However, The Manchester Evening News is reporting that Manchester City are close to adding Nicolas Otamendi from Valencia. The Argentine center back has emerged as one of the best in La Liga and had attracted the attention of both Manchester clubs. It appears that City is the favorite to sign the center back, but at what cost?
According to the report, City emerged as the favorite to sign Otamendi, thanks in large part to an agreement that would send Eliaquim Mangala and Marco Lopes to Valencia on season long loan deals. The important part of this deal would be the departure of Mangala. City paid approximately £32 million to Porto for Mangala, with the belief that he would become a rock at the back for the club.
After a shaky first season, the Frenchman is starting to gain confidence at the back for his new club. With every game, the pairing of Mangala and Kompany continues to improve. Now is not the right time for City to let Mangala leave, even if it is just a temporary loan move. Manchester City needs a reliable center back that is not reaching the twilight of his career.
Vincent Kompany has been great recently, but at 29-years-old, it is hard to imagine him remaining at an elite level for the next several years. Eliaquim Mangala’s play recently has started to justify the massive fee that was required to bring him to the Etihad and it is far too early to give up on the player by sending him away on loan.