Otamendi's agent opens door to River Plate move

Nicolas Otamendi Manchester City 2019-20
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The defender has two years remaining on his current contract with Manchester City, and could return to his native Argentina upon its expiry

Nicolas Otamendi is “dying” to end his career at River Plate and return to his home country of Argentina, according to his agent.

The Manchester City defender began his career with Velez Sarsfield in his birthplace of Buenos Aires, where his performances earned him a move to Porto.

Otamendi subsequently spent time with Valencia and Brazilian outfit Atletico Mineiro before his move to the Etihad Stadium in 2015.

The 32-year-old has been in and out of Pep Guardiola's starting XI since the Spaniard's arrival in Manchester, however, with just 18 league appearances last term.

He has already played 16 games in the Premier League this season, deputising for the injured Aymeric Laporte, but since the Frenchman's return has been dropped, with Fernandinho instead prefered in his stead at the back.

With the end perhaps in sight for the veteran centre-back after five years in Manchester, Otamendi's agent Martin Sendoa says that his client could well return to Argentina with River Plate at the end of his current contract, which expires in June 2022.

However, the representative further noted that there are no plans for an immediate exit, with no negotiations on the table and no contact made with River manager Marcelo Gallardo

“Nicolas’ desire is to retire in River, he is dying to play there,” Sendoa told TyC Sports.

“He is well at [Manchester City], he is playing more than last year. But if River calls him and convinces him...in June it may happen.

“No leader has called me, they still have not made a move. Nicolas is not going to offer, he has to get the call from Gallardo. But one call would change everything."

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One potential stumbling block to any move would be Otamendi's wage packet, with South American teams likely to struggle to match the figures he would earn elsewhere in Europe.

“It is very difficult for an Argentine club to pay his contract,” Sendoa added. “Otamendi is a top player and is playing in the best league in the world.”

Big money was spent by City to bring in the player from Valencia in 2015, and despite winning two Premier League titles with the club, the defender has struggled for consistency ever since his arrival in England.