Pep Guardiola believes Manchester City fullback, Kyle Walker is similar to Lahm and Abidal.
The England international joined City last summer for £50 million, and has paid off for Guardiola.
His skills in fullback, ball handling and passing has seen him develop under Guardiola. His international coach deployed him on the right side of a 3-man defence against Italy. Walker performed so well, he was named man of the match.
And Guardiola has highlighted his ability to adapt to any position given him, an attribute he shares with Lahm and Abidal.
“I think it was a good decision by Gareth Southgate,” said Guardiola, who recently held talks with the Three Lions boss but insisted he did not plant that particular tactical seed.
“He can play in both positions. He has the physicality, he’s intelligent, good at passing short and long, can go forwards and backwards fast. So he can play in a back three.”
“Always when you buy a player, you guess and you imagine – ‘okay, he can do that’,” the former Barcelona and Bayern boss explained.
“But until you have them – training, training, playing, playing – you do not see whether they are able to or not.
“He [Walker] is open minded and when that happens anything can happen.
“In my past, I thought a guy cannot play in that position. After [training them] you think, ‘wow – he can play in that position’.
“For example [Barcelona defender, Eric] Abidal and Philipp Lahm could play in different positions and adapt immediately, so quickly, because they were so good. Kyle is quite similar.”