There’s no doubt that Kyle Walker has improved as his career has gone on, but it’s always going to be impossible for him to shake the tag of being a slight liability who manages to hide his problems with outstanding recovery pace.
That’s also going to become an issue as he gets older and that pace disappears, so finding the long-term successor in that position has to be seen as a priority over the next couple of windows.
It remains to be seen just how much of a fire sale there’s going to be at Chelsea going forward, it will depend on them successfully being bought over and any financial damage being limited or taken on by a new owner, but it does look like Reece James is a target for City this summer:
#ManCity have identified Chelsea's Reece James as a long-term replacement for Kyle Walker.
— City Xtra (@City_Xtra) March 11, 2022
On paper, he does look like an excellent target for Pep Guardiola, but there may be more to this as James does have some connections to Chelsea going back to his childhood where he trained with them as a youth before turning professional, so there’s every reason to believe he would choose to be loyal to the club rather than looking to jump ship at the first sign of trouble.
Again, it could come down to Chelsea’s potential financial issues as he’ll also understand there’s a business side to the game and his club might have no choice but to cash in, but it will be interesting to see what happens here if he’s given a choice.