Who is Miguel Gutierrez? The left-back wanted by Arsenal and Man Utd


Girona became an incredible developmental platform for young footballers this season. The likes of Yan Couto, Savio, Artem Dovbyk and co. have performed beyond expectations and find themselves as the closest challenger to Real Madrid for the La Liga title. 


Miguel Gutierrez is one such player who has become a key part of manager Michel’s side, starting all but one league game. 


Gutierrez came through Real's youth academy, and helped the Under-19s to their only UEFA Youth League title in 2020. However, one of the consequences of emerging from La Fabrica is that even high-quality talents find their pathway to the first team blocked. 


It is therefore a common pattern to see academy graduates leave in search of development and regular minutes, but return some years later to play a greater role in the first team. The performances of the Spanish U21 international this season have given him every chance of following that path.  


Despite playing as a left-back, Gutierrez ranks first for big chances created and second for Expected Assists (xA) in the Girona squad, and has been one of the most creative players in the league. 


Miguel Gutierrez Transfer Value - how much is he worth? 


As per FootballTransfer’s Player Valuation Model, Gutiérrez has a current Estimated Transfer Value (ETV) of €23.3m. 


Who is Miguel Gutierrez? The left-back wanted by Arsenal and Man Utd


Manager Carlo Ancelotti is in the market for a new left-back, but has set his sights on Bayern’s Alphonso Davies. If the club is unable to agree to a cut-price deal for the Canadian in the summer, an approach for Gutierrez could be a realistic option. 


"Miguel Gutierrez has improved a lot at Girona. He's playing very well - so we will decide in summer what to do," said Ancelotti. 


As they often do, Madrid have inserted a clause in his contract that lets them bring him back for €8m in the summer. But this has all the making of a transfer saga as the Spaniard has also been linked with a move to Arsenal and Manchester United. 


The stats - what does Miguel Gutiérrez bring to a team? 


Although deployed as a left back in Michel’s 4-2-3-1 system, Gutierrez is tasked with playing different roles - holding width as a wing-back against some teams while inverting into central areas against sides where Girona expect to dominate possession. 


Remarkably, he manages to fulfil these demands while maintaining his defensive duties. Excelling in such a versatile role is uncommon, but Gutierrez has consistently impressed within Girona’s flexible tactical setup. 


The Madrid-born defender is excellent on the ball and attempts 56 passes per 90 at a solid pass completion rate of 86%. The technical ability and vision to connect with teammates with a high volume of accurate passes under pressure sees him invert into midfield to overload the centre of the pitch. 


With 2.10 carries into the final third, 4.44 progressive passes and 0.19 through balls per 90, Gutierrez ranks among the best full backs in the league, and is always looking to progress the ball and break the opposition lines. 


His 2.22 passes and crosses into the penalty area, 1.13 key passes and 0.31 goal-creating actions per 90 highlight why he is only behind Ilkay Gundogan (14) in creating the most clear-cut goal scoring opportunities (13) in La Liga this season. 


The flip side of being tasked with such elaborate offensive duties might lead to a player being found out defensively. But the ability of the 22-year-old to read the game and defend the wide areas and any gaps left in behind sees him make 6.35 ball recoveries per 90 and win almost 60% of his aerial duels. 


Versatile players are very valuable in football, and the all-round qualities that Gutierrez brings to the table are certainly not going unnoticed by the continent's biggest teams.


This article was provided by FootballTransfers

Who is Miguel Gutierrez? The left-back wanted by Arsenal and Man Utd