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Manchester City sign Argentina midfielder dubbed ‘the next Messi’ for £12.5m

Manchester City have announced the signing of talented Argentine midfielder Claudio Echeverri from River Plate.

The Premier League giants have reportedly agreed to pay approximately £12.5 million for the 18-year-old, who has already shown immense promise on the international stage.

Echeverri has committed his future to Manchester City by putting pen to paper on a four-and-a-half-year contract, extending until 2028.

Despite the signing, Echeverri is set to remain with his current club, River Plate, throughout the year 2024.

This loan period allows the promising midfielder to continue his development in familiar surroundings before making the transition to European football.

Manchester City’s willingness to facilitate such arrangements underlines their commitment to player development and strategic planning.

Claudio Echeverri holding a shirt as he signs for Manchester City
Remember the name, Claudio Echeverri. (Image: @ManCity/X Getty)

This is not the first time Manchester City has entered into negotiations with River Plate for promising Argentine talents.

In January 2022, the club agreed on a similar deal for forward Julian Alvarez, emphasizing their focus on tapping into the South American market for emerging football stars.

Claudio Echeverri’s rise to prominence was further solidified when he captained Argentina’s Under-17 squad during the U17 World Cup in November.

His standout performance included a remarkable hat-trick against arch-rivals Brazil in the quarter-finals, leading Argentina to a convincing 3-0 victory.

Manchester City will be hoping they have secured the ‘next Messi’ but only time will tell, but if we go by previous signings, Pep has great reputation in nurturing young talents and bringing them to heights of football glory.

Phil Foden and Cole Palmer are just two of the huge array of Man City youth products that have excelled at the highest level under Pep Guardiola.

Despite finishing fourth in the tournament after losing the third-place play-off, Echeverri showcased his goal-scoring prowess, ending the competition with a notable five goals to his name.