All eyes will be on Erling Haaland this summer when the Norwegian striker arrives at Manchester City, but Julian Alvarez showed on Wednesday night why it’d be foolish to ignore him.
City signed the 22-year-old forward in January, agreeing a £14.1 million deal with Argentine outfit River Plate.
Alvarez, who has been capped seven times by the Argentina national team, signed a five-and-a-half-year deal with the Premier League champions but stayed with River until the end of the season.
Widely regarded as one of the most gifted young players in South America, Alvarez made history on Wednesday by becoming the first player in River Plate’s 121-year history to score six goals in a single game.
😎 Julián Álvarez, el primer jugador de River que convierte 6⃣ goles en un mismo partido 🤟🏼— River Plate (@RiverPlate) May 26, 2022
✍🏼 121 años y la historia se sigue escribiendo… pic.twitter.com/b0gscOrluE
Alvarez netted a rare double hat-trick against Alianza Lima in the Copa Libertadores – South America’s equivalent of the Champions League.
The gifted forward scored his first goal of the night in the 15th minute and had completed his first hat-trick before half-time.
He then repeated the feat after the break, scoring three more goals in the 54th, 57th and 83rd minutes as River wrapped up an 8-1 victory.
Video: Julian Alvarez’s six goals for River Plate
Watch Alvarez’s goals here:
All 6 goals scored by Julian Alvarez tonight, he’s too good. pic.twitter.com/ElTICDvW3r— 𝓛𝓮𝓮🍊 (@IeeSZN) May 26, 2022
The lad looks special, doesn’t he?
City appear to have landed themselves another diamond and it seems that many Premier League fans don’t even know it yet.
Imagine how good Pep Guardiola’s side will be next season with Alvarez *and* Haaland in the squad. It’s frightening.
He was seen taking not one but two match balls home later in the evening.
Soon-to-be Manchester City forward Julian Alvarez just scored six goals in one match for River Plate 🤯 pic.twitter.com/aeed0G5kC4— GOAL (@goal) May 26, 2022
Julián Álvarez has taken 2 balls in home, for scoring 6 goals in one game. Have you seen anything like this? 😃🕷 pic.twitter.com/iAhegqCm7O— All About Argentina 🛎🇦🇷 (@AlbicelesteTalk) May 26, 2022
How highly do Man City rate Julian Alvarez?
Needless to say, City view Alvarez as a footballer with extremely high potential.
The club’s director of football Txiki Begiristain said after Alvarez’s signing was confirmed earlier this year: “I really believe we can provide him with the right conditions to fulfil his potential and become a top player.”
Guardiola, meanwhile, sees Alvarez playing through the middle in his City team.
“Up front, in the middle,” the revered Catalan coach said, per City’s official website, when asked in February where Alvarez may fit into his team.
“I see a player more in positions between the pockets and the striker. A guy with this sense of goal has to play close to the goal.
“For the age, for the price, for many reasons for the future it is a really good deal. He is a guy who has a sense of goal, the quality, the movement in behind – a street player.
“He is so dynamic. I think when he is playing the goal is there in his mind with the way he finishes and makes the movements over five metres.
“He has the desire, the passion and the strength without the ball.”