Premier League • England

Liverpool, Chelsea ‘join race’ for €120m-rated Man Utd target coveted by Bruno Fernandes

Liverpool and Chelsea are interested in Benfica star Joao Neves

Liverpool and Chelsea are interested in Benfica star Joao Neves

Liverpool and Chelsea are set to battle for highly-rated Benfica midfielder Joao Neves in the summer, according to reports. 

The 19-year-old is considered to be one of the most exciting young players in Europe and has a number of top sides chasing his signature.

Man Utd are among the other teams keeping close tabs on Neves’ situation.

As previously reported by TEAMtalk, the Red Devil’s captain Bruno Fernandes is a huge admirer of the Benfica star and would love to see him at Old Trafford.

Neves has chalked up 66 senior appearances for Benfica so far, scoring three goals in the process, and has played a key role in their title race this season.

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The teenager has already earned three caps for Portugal, too, and is only expected to improve as he gains experience.

According to O Jogo, Liverpool and Chelsea have ‘joined the race’ for Neves and are firmly in contention to sign him this summer. 

Liverpool, Chelsea battling to sign Benfica star

The report states that Liverpool and Chelsea have identified Neves as a key target but he certainly won’t leave Benfica on the cheap.

The midfielder is under contract with the Portuguese giants until 2028 and his deal includes a €120 million release clause (approx. £102.7m).

Benfica are determined to keep hold of Neves for at least another season and his suitors may have to pay that fee to lure him away from the Estadio da Luz this summer.

Neves could actually become even more expensive in the future, as Benfica are reportedly trying to tie him down to a new contract which would see his release clause rise to €150 million (approx. £128.3m).

It’s no secret that Liverpool are keen to bring in a new centre-mid this summer but it seems far-fetched that they’d be willing to spend £100m+ on a young player with no Premier League experience.

The Reds did pay £85m to sign striker Darwin Nunez from Benfica in the summer of 2022, however, and have a good relationship with the Portuguese side.

Chelsea, on the other hand, signed Enzo Fernandez from Benfica for £107m in January 2023, but it’s unlikely that they’d be able to afford to sanction another huge money deal.

TEAMtalk sources state that the Blues could be forced to sell several homegrown players this summer to comply with the Premier League’s profit and sustainability rules.

With that in mind, it will be interesting to see if Liverpool, Chelsea, or possibly Man Utd are able to negotiate a cheaper fee for Neves in the coming months.

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