The Athletic journalist Pol Ballus was told before the COVID-19 pandemic by a member of the Man City academy that Rico Lewis is the “next Philipp Lahm.”
While there is no denying that Lahm is arguably the greatest right-back of all time, one can understand where the parallel to Lewis stems from.
Under Pep Guardiola, the former Bayern Munich captain operated in an inverted role.
And as is common knowledge, Philipp Lahm revelled when handed the newfound responsibility.
So much so that the World Cup winner went on to play as a defensive midfielder at spells and thrive.
This season, Rico Lewis, who Pep Guardiola feels can become the club’s right-back for the next decade has also been deployed in the same role this season.
Starting 3 back-to-back games in the Carabao Cup as well as the Premier League, the youngster has turned heads by coming across as a natural in a complex tactical role.
However, it seemed like the teenager was always destined to perform as an inverted right-back.
Rico Lewis dubbed as the “next Philipp Lahm”
The Athletic’s Pol Ballus replied to Michael Cox on Twitter, who was praising Rico Lewis after his impressive display against Leeds United.
Under his tweet, Ballus revealed that a member of the Man City academy dubbed Lewis as the “next Philipp Lahm.”
Seems as if Lewis was always tailor-made to become an inverted right-back
Under Pep Guardiola, right-backs such as Philipp Lahm himself, or even Kyle Walker or Joao Cancelo are often tasked with adapting to an inverted role.
However, it seems as if Rico Lewis was always the perfect fit to execute a unique role, which has become a signature feature of any Guardiola side.
If Lewis becomes even half the player Lahm was, Man City have a future legend within their ranks for years to come.