Manchester United are interested in a double raid on Benfica for two of Portugal’s most impressive players and have found out they will cost a whopping £193million in total, according to a report.
Man Utd have enjoyed a successful debut season under Erik ten Hag, having lifted the Carabao Cup at Wembley in February. Plus, they are through to the Europa League and FA Cup semi-finals, where they will come up against Sevilla and Brighton respectively.
The Red Devils have also looked nailed on for Champions League qualification previously, having put themselves in third place behind title challengers Arsenal and Manchester City.
However, Ten Hag’s men have failed to win in their last three league outings, which has resulted in Newcastle United leapfrogging them and pushing them down to fourth.
Man Utd were thrashed 7-0 by Liverpool in an astonishing game on March 5. In their next league match after that, they were held to a 0-0 draw by relegation-battling Southampton, during which Casemiro got sent off.
And on Sunday, Man Utd dropped more points in the top-four hunt when they were beaten 2-0 by Newcastle. Joe Willock and Callum Wilson scored the decisive goals for the Magpies.
While Ten Hag has done a great job at Man Utd this season, it is clear that some new players need to arrive in the summer to help them get closer to Arsenal and City.
And Man Utd could head to Portugal when signing a new centre-back and striker. They have been linked with Benfica defender Antonio Silva, who is enjoying a breakout campaign.
Man Utd eye two Primeira Liga stars
Despite being just 19 years old, he has already played 35 times in all competitions for Benfica this term. And his mature performances at the back have resulted in him winning three caps for the Portugal national team.
Man Utd are joined by Liverpool and City in tracking the exciting teenager. Benfica are aware of the growing interest in his services and have therefore tied him down to a new contract.
While his previous release clause stood at just £13million, he will now cost an eye-watering €100m (£88m). And Sport Witness, who cite Portuguese newspaper A Bola, report that Silva will only leave Benfica if this clause is paid in full.
And this is the same for Silva’s attacking team-mate Goncalo Ramos. He has emerged as a striker target for Ten Hag, alongside Harry Kane of Tottenham and Napoli’s Victor Osimhen.
Ramos’ release clause is even bigger than Silva’s. The forward will only leave Benfica if Man Utd pay €120m (£105m).
That means Man Utd will have to part with an incredible £193m to snare both Silva and Ramos. Clearly, Man Utd fans will be worried about this sort of price as it will vastly reduce the club’s ability to spend on other positions.
However, there is good reason to suggest Silva and Ramos will be very successful if they come to the Premier League. Silva is proving himself to be one of the most reliable young centre-backs in Europe. And while most of Europe’s elite will be battling for Josko Gvardiol, Man Utd could go down a slightly easier route and get Silva instead.
Ramos, meanwhile, has shown he can score goals for fun. His tally stands at 25 goals for this season, while he also managed a hat-trick for Portugal at the World Cup.
Ramos is still only 21, so he has plenty of time to develop his game and become an even better goalscorer. He could therefore put up frightening numbers for Man Utd in the future.
There will undoubtedly be bigger names on Ten Hag’s transfer shortlist at Man Utd. But if Man Utd want to ensure that the future of the team is bright, they should go after Silva and Ramos.