‘Hardly recognise him’ – Ralf Rangnick surprised this player has been so good since joining Manchester City

Photo: Getty Images

Former Manchester United interim manager Ralf Rangnick has suggested Manchester City defender Manuel Akanji is a ‘different player’ to the one that arrived from Borussia Dortmund.

Akanji has made 39 appearances for Pep Guardiola’s side this campaign, which has included 32 starts.

“You can hardly recognise him compared to his time at Borussia Dortmund,” he said, as per Blick. “[He] performs with a naturalness, as if he had always played at this level in a team like this.

“[This happens when Pep Guardiola] is so convinced of a player, has fallen in love with a player, works and talks with him so much, develops him. It was like with Joshua Kimmich, who Pep fell in love with in Munich.”

No City defender has made more appearances for Guardiola’s side than Akanji this season, with Portuguese centre-back Ruben Dias having featured on 36 occasions.