25-year-old Faouzi Ghoulam, who currently plays his football at Napoli in Serie A, is rumored to be at the top of the shopping list at Manchester City. The Algerian plays at left-back and would most likely be a replacement for the unreliable Aleksandar Kolarov. Although he started the season wonderfully, Aleks’ form has dipped and he looks unfit for City’s already questionable back line. If Faouzi puts pen to paper, this will surely be the long awaited nail in Kolarov’s coffin.
It is unknown if Ghoulam would start as a backup for Gael Clichy, but that seems fairly likely. Clichy made a costly mistake when defending the powerful Romelu Lukaku at the weekend against Everton. A player should never be judged based on one mishap, however the Frenchman is not getting any younger, and he could use a more fresh backup to succeed him one day.
Ghoulam has made an impressive 70 appearances since 2014 for Napoli, and 23 for the Algerian national team. He has not had any success in front of goal for the Italian giants, however, he has found the net five times for his country. So what is it about him that is attracting Sky Blue eyes?
So far this season, Ghoulam has made ten appearances, two of which were in the Champions League. Experience in European competition is essential for a player who wants to cement their name in Manchester City’s history. In his ten total appearances, Ghoulam has made himself very useful on offense and defense with four assists and three clean sheets. A full-back who knows how to put the ball in the box would be crucial to City’s cause, and they could really use some more solidity in the defense.
Faouzi could certainly be a good candidate to help solve these issues. His market value currently stands at around £12 million, which would not make a dent in the club's funds. By January we will know if this is City’s answer to their full-back problems. After being linked to countless names, it is still uncertain as to whether or not this will finally be the one.