Julian Alvarez: Manchester City striker makes history with Champions League win - BBC Sport

Julian Alvarez: Manchester City striker makes history with Champions League win

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Julian AlvarezImage source, Getty Images
Image caption,

Julian Alvarez scored three goals in his debut season in the Champions League for Manchester City

After a record-breaking six months, Manchester City's Julian Alvarez has booked his place in history as the first player to win a treble of European Cup, league and domestic cup - and a World Cup - in the same season.

Nine players before the 23-year-old Argentine forward had won the European Cup or Champions League and the World Cup in the same season - but none had won the domestic double as well.

Alvarez finishes the season as City's second top scorer with 17 goals, despite starting fewer than half their games, and was the third top scorer at the 2022 World Cup.

City won the Premier League title by five points from Arsenal, beat Manchester United in the FA Cup final and saw off Inter Milan in the Champions League final - after Argentina beat France in the World Cup final in December.

Alvarez did not get on the pitch in their 1-0 win over Inter in Istanbul but still got his hands on the trophy afterwards.

Who did Alvarez beat to this record?

Image source, Rex Features
Image caption,

Hans-Georg Schwarzenbeck and Gerd Muller (pictured) were two of the six team-mates to win the European Cup and World Cup with Bayern Munich and Germany in 1974

Alvarez becomes the 10th player to become European champion with his club and world champion with his country in the same campaign. Had Inter won, then their Argentine striker Lautaro Martinez would have been the 10th.

All the others won the World Cup after the club season, but this time it was mid-season because of the Qatar heat.

Of the other nine, six were Bayern Munich and Germany team-mates in 1973-74 - and the other three played for Real Madrid in different years in the Champions League era.

Hans-Georg Schwarzenbeck, Gerd Muller, Ulrich Hoeness, Paul Breitner, Josef Maier, Franz Beckenbauer all went quite close to the achievement.

Bayern Munich won the European Cup and the Bundesliga in 1974, but lost to a last-minute penalty in the German Cup semi-finals.

Christian Karembeu, with France in 1998, Roberto Carlos, with Brazil in 2002, and Raphael Varane, with France in 2018, all won the World Cup in the same year as the Champions League with Real.

But Real - being the Champions League specialists they are - were crowned European champions without winning either La Liga (or even finishing second) or the Copa del Rey in those seasons.

Meanwhile, Alvarez becomes the 13th player to win the Champions League and its South American version, the Copa Libertadores.

David Luiz, Ramires (both Chelsea) and Carlos Tevez (Manchester United) are the three others to do with an English team.

Alvarez played in the 2018 final between River Plate and Boca Juniors, which River won 5-3 on aggregate after extra time. The second leg of that was played in Madrid after River fans attacked Boca's bus, injuring players and staff.

Alvarez's long, very productive season

Media caption,

Argentina's 'young diamond' Alvarez sparkles in semi-final win

Alvarez has played for almost three years solid without a break from football. The last month when he did not play a game for club or country was August 2020 - when football was still suspended in Argentina because of Covid.

Since September 2020 he has played 165 games and scored 75 goals - including winning the 2021 Argentine Premier Division golden boot in River's title-winning season.

City signed him from River after activating a £14m release clause in January 2022 but let him stay on loan with the Buenos Aires side until the summer.

He played his final game for River on 7 July, in their Copa Libertadores exit against Velez Sarsfield, and 23 days later scored for City in their Community Shield loss to Liverpool.

Alvarez played 49 games for Pep Guardiola's side this season, starting 23 of them, scoring 17 goals in all competitions.

Only striker Erling Haaland, with a record-breaking 52 goals, scored more goals for the club this season.

Despite City usually preferring just one striker, Alvarez and Haaland played together 29 times this season, with Alvarez standing in for players such as Kevin de Bruyne and being positioned a bit further back on occasion.

Halfway through the season, Alvarez went to Qatar with Argentina and won the World Cup.

He began the tournament as a substitute but started the decisive group game against Poland and all of their knockout games, scoring four goals in those five matches as they won the World Cup.

Only France's Kylian Mbappe and Argentine team-mate Lionel Messi scored more than Alvarez in Qatar.

Alvarez's success also sees the distinction of him winning 13 different trophies, including the Copa America and a few smaller cups - but never winning the same one twice.

Image source, BBC Sport
Image source, BBC Sport

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