Julian Alvarez, the only player yet to return from the significant Manchester City contingent to the World Cup will soon be back. Unlike his 15 other teammates that graced the competition but left disappointed, Alvarez was not only the last man standing but the man to take home the biggest prize in world football.
After the celebrations that followed achieving a feat that is the dream of every football player, the City forward will soon be back in Manchester to continue the season. It’s very likely that the events in Qatar have had a significant effect on the 22-year-old.
His situation at the club before leaving for the global showpiece should not remain the same if he is to stay happy at the Etihad Stadium.
Having so far spent most of his time at the club on the bench, he will now want to take a step forward and have a taste of regular football. Such a desire will be justified as he proved himself at the biggest stage of all. His performance for Argentina made one thing clear: he is too good to be relegated to the bench.
Following the tournament, Pep Guardiola may have found out, much like the Argentine coach, that pairing him with the striker up front could yield many benefits. Erling Haaland may be the king of goals at Manchester City right now, but he cannot do it all alone.
Games such as the one against Brentford just before the World Cup are a reminder that everyone's contribution will be needed. Although City are the top scorers in the division right now, the team is still five points behind Arsenal on the league table.
As it stands, if the season ended today Arsenal would be crowned champions despite City’s better goal difference. That underscores the importance of winning every game or dropping points in as few matches as possible.
So apart from keeping him happy, the team stands to benefit from Alvarez playing regularly. That will keep him sharp and in form while keeping his confidence high. That way, he can always come through whenever he is needed.
Still competing in all of the League Cup, FA Cup and the Champions League, it only gets tougher from here. With the Premier League title race shaping up to be a really tough one, doubling up the firepower upfront could just be the difference maker for the Blues this season.