Julian Alvarez has had the year of his life and would certainly never have expected to be lifting the World Cup trophy before his 22nd birthday.
After shining for River Plate in his native country, Manchester City snapped Alvarez up on a five-and-a-half-year deal back in January, before he joined the club officially last summer. After scoring seven goals in all competitions so far this season, Alvarez was called up to Argentina’s World Cup squad and went onto net three times in Qatar - including a brace in the semi-final against Croatia.
The 22-year-old took to the stage with the likes of Lionel Messi and Angel Di Maria and will now return to battle for his first Premier League title with Man City, however it is not all sunshine for Alvarez as his girlfriend has seemingly picked up some undeserved stick following Argentina’s victory. Since the turn of the year, a petition for the striker to split from his girlfriend, Emilia Ferrero, has reached 20,000 signatures - here is why.
Who is Julian Alvarez’s girlfriend?
Maria Emilia Ferrero is a PE teacher, hockey player and the apparent girlfriend of Man City’s Alvarez, who originates from the same village of Calchin in Cordoba as her partner. While her Instagram account shows photos of the couple from about a year ago, it is believed that they dated briefly around five years ago before reuniting more recently.
Ferrero has regularly shown her support for Alvarez on her social media account, including a post in September with a caption that translated to ‘When you want to walk I don’t care, where you go I want to be your companion’, as well as a number of snaps of Alvarez sporting River Plate, Argentina and Man City shirts. During the World Cup she also shared photos of her in Doha, including one of her sporting an Argentina shirt outside the Lusail Stadium when the national team beat Netherlands on penalties.
What is the petition about?
While Alvarez and Ferrero are clearly still happy and together, it appears fans are eager for the pair to split up following the World Cup - with over 20,000 signing the petition encouraging their parting. This bizarre reaction occured after one angry fan created the petition, after they claimed that Alvarez’s girlfriend had refused to allow a group of supporters to take a photograph with the Argentina striker during their celebrations. Ferrero has recently posted a new photo alongside Alvarez, suggesting they are undaunted by the criticism, though the comments remain full of abuse towards the Argentine.
Will Julian Alvarez play against Chelsea?
Alvarez missed out on wins over Liverpool and Leeds United as he celebrated with family and friends in Argentina but was fit to feature from the bench against Everton, coming onto replace Bernardo Silva with only three minutes of normal time left. With Pep Guardiola’s team now set to take on Chelsea on Thursday before meeting them again in the FA Cup three days later, Alvarez is likely to start in one of the games.