Manchester United are planning to make a move for Benfica midfielder Joao Neves next summer, according to Sky Sports Germany reporter Florian Plettenberg.
The usually reliable journalist says he has had it “confirmed” that the Red Devils are interested in recruiting the 19-year-old, along with a number of other “top clubs”:
❗️João #Neves is a potential transfer target for ManUtd! Not in winter, but for summer – confirmed ✔️
— Florian Plettenberg (@Plettigoal) October 17, 2023
Neves made his debut for Portugal’s senior team on Monday, playing the last 5 minutes of their European Championship qualifier against Bosnia. His appearance is likely what prompted Plettenberg to post about the player’s situation on X.
United have been linked with Neves before
At the end of August, English tabloid The Sun wrote an article on United’s interest in the teenager, describing him as “Bruno Fernandes 2.0” due to his style of play.
Whether that is a fair comparison, only time will tell. In his 31 appearances for Benfica’s first-team, he has scored just 1 goal and contributed 2 assists, so it appears he has a fair way to go to match the United’s captain goal output.
Benfica won’t sell their prized asset on the cheap
It is believed that Neves has a €120m (£103)m release clause so Benfica are pretty well protected if they want to keep hold of the midfielder.
Like with all Portuguese teams, there is an expectation that they will sell if their asking price is met but it’s unlikely that United will be able to secure his services for a reasonable fee.