Manchester United are reportedly prepared to fight it out with Manchester City and Valencia for highly rated Benfica full-back Alex Grimaldo.

 

The Daily Mail have claimed that Manchester United are interested in Benfica defender Alex Grimaldo. The Red Devils are prepared to battle the likes of Manchester City and Valencia, who are also linked with a move for the youngster.

Alejandro Grimaldo, who is better known as Alex Grimaldo, is a Spanish youngster who is a product of the famed La Masia academy of FC Barcelona. The full-back failed to break into the first-team setup at Nou Camp and subsequently earned a transfer to SL Benfica in January this year for a fee of €1.5m.

The defender has produced outstanding displays for the Portuguese club this season, with 1 goal and 2 assists to his name in the league already. Grimaldo has become a regular feature in the Benfica side and has played each and every minute of the club’s domestic league and Champions League campaigns thus far.

It was reported that Pep Guardiola had personally visited Benfica in order to take a better look at the 21-year-old and has taken a liking to the player. Meanwhile, Jose Mourinho has also reportedly sent one of his trusted men to open talks with the Benfica hierarchy and monitor Grimaldo’s performances.

Grimaldo has been impressive since making the move from Barcelona and has started attracting the interest from Premier League duo Manchester United and Manchester City along with the likes of Juventus and Valencia. (Picture Courtesy - AFP/Getty Images)

Grimaldo has been impressive since making the move from Barcelona and has started attracting the interest from Premier League duo Manchester United and Manchester City along with the likes of Juventus and Valencia. (Picture Courtesy – AFP/Getty Images)

Mourinho is also rumoured to be impressed with the youngster after receiving rave reviews from his representative, but the Manchester clubs are not the only ones in the race to sign the promising defender. As per Spanish publication AS, Valencia have joined the likes of Manchester United and Manchester City in the pursuit of Grimaldo, while the likes of Juventus and Middlesbrough are also tracking the 21-year-old’s progress.

The reports have also speculated that the player, whose current deal runs till 2021, has a minimum release clause of €60m inserted into the contract. While there have been no reports about a concrete transfer offer, it is unlikely that Benfica would let the player go for anything less than the amount stipulated in the clause.

Manchester City do need a left-back in order to replace their ageing options in that position, and the player, being a former Barcelona man, would seemingly fit well into the Guardiola philosophy. However, Mourinho’s reported rift with Luke Shaw could very well pave the way for Grimaldo’s transfer to the red half of Manchester. It would be interesting to see where the Spaniard ends up in the long run, as it looks like the power struggle in Manchester is set to continue for some time yet.

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