Football

Manchester City's new defender Ruben Dias is a 'real leader': Txiki

Manchester City have boosted their frail defence with the signing of centre-back Ruben Dias on a six-year deal from Benfica.

The Portuguese side confirmed last Sunday that they had reached a deal to sell the 23-year-old for 68 million euros (S$108.9m) plus an extra 3.6m euros in add-ons, with Nicolas Otamendi heading the other way for 15m euros.

Dias, who has 19 caps for Portugal, said he could not turn down the opportunity to join City and play under manager Pep Guardiola.

City'sneed for more defensive reinforcements was evident as they were thrashed 5-2 at home to Leicester City last Sunday - the first time a Guardiola side has ever conceded five in his storied managerial career.

City director of football Txiki Begiristain said Dias has "developed into a real leader" and has all the attributes they were looking for in a defender.

Dias, who could make his debut against Leeds United on Sunday morning (Singapore time), becomes just the latest in a list of expensive defensive signings, totalling over 450m euros, since Guardiola was appointed in 2016. - AFP

Football