• niallkeenan12

Couto - Should he stay or should he go?

Yan Couto penned his Manchester City contract in March 2020 but it wasn’t until this week that he made his first senior appearance in a sky-blue shirt. The highly-regarded 19-year-old was bought out of Coritiba in his native Brazil for £5.4 million and came on at half-time in

City’s 2-0 friendly win over Preston North End on Tuesday night.

Our own @Mason_SportsNews gave Couto an 8.0 rating for his impressive showing at right-back after starring in that position last season at Girona. The teenager was ineligible for a work permit upon arrival and it was decided that he spend the year on loan at sister club Girona in La Liga Segunda. There he recorded four assists and scored once as Girona narrowly missed out on promotion to the top-flight. Couto was voted the best player in his position at right-back as he demonstrated his capabilities both defensively and in attack.

The Brazilian assisted the winner in the U-17 FIFA World Cup final in 2019 and he was snapped up by City under the noses of Barcelona who had agreed a deal in principle with Bayern Munich also lurking. Couto was persuaded by the idea of working with Pep Guardiola and the manager will have been pleased with how the youngster performed on Tuesday. The right-back combined well with Patrick Roberts on the flank and wasn’t afraid to drift into the channel where we so often see Joao Cancelo occupying. The defender expressed his delight at making his debut on Instagram, posting : "Very happy for the debut. Another dream come true."

Perhaps Couto could play back-up to Kyle Walker this season with Cancelo being used on the left. However, complications with a work permit may arise and he could be let go on loan once more. Celtic are reportedly interested in signing Couto on a permanent basis but perhaps a loan move to a top-tier side could be more beneficial. City Football Group member Troyes were promoted to Ligue 1 last season and France wouldn’t be a bad landing spot for the 19-year-old.