Chelsea have reportedly joined Manchester United and Manchester City in the race to sign young Sporting Lisbon defender Nuno Mendes this summer.
The teenage left-back played a major role as the Lisbon-based outfit won their first Portuguese league title success in 19 years this season. However, as is the nature in Portugal, Sporting are looking to cash in on the young talent to help balance the books.
The 18-year-old, who is valued at a whopping £60m, enjoyed a breakthrough season in Portugal. He is also a regular in the senior squad ahead of the upcoming Euros.
Mendes made 35 appearances for Sporting this term, having become the regular left-back after Marcos Acuna joined Sevilla last summer.
A report in Record now claims that the youngster’s exploits have attracted the attention of Chelsea, who have joined the two Manchester clubs in trying to sign him.
Left-back isn’t exactly a position of need for Thomas Tuchel, with Ben Chilwell only signed last summer. However, both Marcos Alonso and Emerson Palmieri could leave, opening up a gap in the Blues squad.
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United had been reported as the favourites to land Mendes. Indeed, it was reported last week that the player’s agent had flown in for talks.
The Red Devils are actively looking to bring in the best young talent from around Europe. Mendes is viewed as a player to eventually challenge Luke Shaw, with Alex Telles likely to move on.
City in need of a specialist
As for the City, a report in the Daily Express states they want a new specialist left-back – having had uncertainty in the position for some time.
Benjamin Mendy is the only natural left-back at the club. Meanwhile, Oleksandr Zinchenko and Joao Cancelo have also filled the role.
However, City’s main focus is expected to be on finding a replacement for record scorer Sergio Aguero.
Tottenham frontman Harry Kane remains their preferred target. But Spurs chairman Daniel Levy is expected to place an extortionate price tag on the England skipper’s head.