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Tuesday, November 28, 2023

Man United will face competition for talented 18-year-old midfielder with staggering release clause

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It seems when the summer transfer window opens next year, Manchester United may well be targeting a new central midfielder as Casemiro’s weaknesses are starting to be exposed.

Erik ten Hag’s Manchester United defeated Brentford over the weekend but the problems in their midfield, and Casemiro’s struggles, could mean that a new option in the middle of the park is desired.

It has emerged that United are keen on Benfica midfielder Joao Neves with a report from Portuguese outlet Journal De Noticias claiming that the Red Devils are keen on the young Portuguese.

Luis Castro, formerly of Benfica, believes the talented teenager is worth the price tag on his head.

Benfica, who have a history of selling players for an overinflated price, may well demand a pretty penny to allow the teenager to move to Old Trafford.

FC Internazionale v SL Benfica: Group D - UEFA Champions League 2023/24

Photo by sportinfoto/DeFodi Images via Getty Images

According to the report from the Portuguese outlet, Juventus are keen on the midfielder and have initiated contact with the 18-year-old’s agent Jorge Mendes.

The Italian side wanted to know the conditions of the deal with United hovering too, but the Portuguese side reportedly rejected those advances straightaway.

They seemingly consider the midfielder as an untouchable in the team and an ‘essential element’ of the team.


The 19-year-old extended his contract to 2028 in August and that saw his release clause go from €60 million to €120 million, which is around £103 million, a figure United would surely go nowhere near.

Do United need another midfielder

It’s not a great indictment of United’s recruitment capabilities that another midfielder may well be targeted after the club signed Mason Mount and Sofyan Amrabat this summer as well as Casemiro last summer.

Neves, though, would be another midfield addition. According to FBREF, Neves’ ball retention skills are superb with his 88% pass completion rate ranking him the seventh best in Europe so far this season.

United would surely not commit another £100 million on a player with potential and the Red Devils have the luxury of waiting and seeing just how the young midfielder develops.

If he carries on, on this upward trajectory, then United will surely come in for him properly.

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