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Manchester City midfielder set for La Liga loan after UEFA rule blocks transfer



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UEFA’s Champions League rules are likely to see Manchester City send one of their most highly-rated players on loan to La Liga after Girona’s qualification for the competition.

That concerns the future of Argentina youth international and one of the most exciting prospects ever to emerge from the South American country Claudion Echeverri, signed by Manchester City during the recent January transfer window.

The 18-year-old playmaker signed a contract with the Etihad Stadium club until the summer of 2028, in a deal worth an initial £12.5 million plus add-ons, whilst Echeverri remains on loan at River Plate until the end of 2024.

Between now and then, speculation is likely to circle over what Manchester City will plot to do with Echeverri’s rising talents, and where best to develop his game when the player makes his initial move over to the European level of the sport.

The initial feeling was that City Football Group’s Girona could be viewed as the ideal destination given their standing in La Liga and their excellent track record working with the likes of Savio and Yan Couto.

However, fresh developments appear to have caused a change of plan.

According to the information of Olé, as translated and relayed by Sport Witness, Claudio Echeverri’s planned loan move to Girona can now longer happen, with UEFA blocking Manchester City from loaning a player to another club from within the City Football Group.

As a result, it is reported that Echeverri is set to be loaned out to another La Liga side, with Spanish football seen by the City Group as the best place for him to develop. It is claimed that the idea is for him gain experience for two or three seasons before a chance to play for City.

With regards to potential destinations for the highly-rated Argentine playmaker, it is claimed that the likes of Real Sociedad, Real Betis and UD Las Palmas are options, while River Plate’s hopes of keeping the player on loan for longer is said to be off the table.

Real Betis were the most successful of the aforementioned trio, securing themselves a place in the UEFA Europa League qualifying rounds with a sixth place finish, pipping Real Sociedad by a single point in the division.

As for UD Las Palmas, they finished in 14th place but are widely regarded as being a hotspot for rising young talents, with their most successful example being Pedri who is now thriving with Spanish giants FC Barcelona.

For now it remains to be seen what decision is made over Claudio Echeverri’s future, although Manchester City will almost certainly make an informed decision on what is best for the Argentine’s game time and knowledge of the European game.