Wolves have given Man Utd and Arsenal hope of securing a Ruben Neves transfer this summer after identifying a curious replacement, per a report.
The future of Ruben Neves is a subject that could define Wolves’ summer. The Portuguese midfielder, 25, has been a shining light in Wolves’ midfield ever since signing from FC Porto in 2017.
He has developed a superb partnership with Joao Moutinho in the engine room with that pairing guiding Wolves to successive seventh-placed finishes upon returning to the Premier League.
Wolves are once again in the mix for European qualification this time around, though Neves might not be around for the campaign that results.
He has frequently been linked to Man Utd with the Red Devils seeking to revamp their midfield. Indeed, the Sun claimed incoming boss Erik ten Hag will pursue Neves once appointed.
The central areas have long been a hotbed for criticism at Old Trafford. And with Paul Pogba due to leave as a free agent, at least one new midfielder must be signed.
Sky Sports then put Arsenal in the hunt. The Gunners too are seeking midfield reinforcements with Thomas Partey’s recent injury exposing how light they are in that area.
They too will be a man light next year when Mohamed Elneny leaves on a free.
Wolves boss Bruno Lage has suggested Neves would command a transfer fee of around £100m. However, Sky claimed a more realistic figure is £50m-£60m.
Jorge Mendes connection could help sign Ruben Neves replacement
Now, according to the Sun, Neves’ admirers have been handed a boost after Wolves began to prepare for life without their talisman.
The outlet stated the surprise name of Martim Neto is being eyed to become Neves’ successor.
The 19-year-old plies his trade in the Benfica B team and is yet to make a senior first-team appearance.
Nonetheless, he is reportedly one of the ‘most highly-rated’ players at the club and a first-team debut is not far off.
Ruben Neves top target for Ten Hag and Manchester United
Wolves midfielder Ruben Neves is wanted by Erik Ten Hag as his first signing for Manchester United this summer
What’s more, his current deal in Lisbon expires this summer. Though the Sun’s wording suggests he could sign a new deal first before potentially moving on for a fee. His current value stand around the £10m mark.
Adding further fuel to the fire is the fact Neto has recently switched agents to Jorge Mendes.
Mendes has a number of Portuguese stars on his books. He has also been instrumental in several high profile Wolves deals in recent times.
It’s claimed incoming Benfica boss Roger Schmidt would first like to cast his eye over Neto in pre-season. But if he deems an exit the most logical next step, Wolves could pounce and take a step towards selling Ruben Neves in the process.