Benfica President Luis Felipe Vieira has ended all speculation surrounding the future of Mile Svilar, amid interest from Manchester United.
In an interview with BTV, as reported by Tribal Football, SL Benfica president has dismissed speculation linking highly rated Belgian goalkeeper Mile Svilar with a move to Manchester United, claiming the teenager is solely focused on his future at Estadio Da Luz.
“We have followed him since he was 15. We’ve already had an offer for him, four times what we paid and where we would keep him for another two years. It’s important to note, Svilar is 18 and only focused on Benfica. He won’t leave.”
Svilar progressed through the ranks at Anderlecht before breaking into the first-team setup last season. The Belgian shot-stopper, though, didn’t make a single senior appearance for the club, and was snapped up by Portuguese giants Benfica in the summer.
Initially the second-choice goalkeeper at Estadio Da Luz, Svilar was recently promoted by Rui Vitoria, and the youngster has grabbed his opportunity with both hands. So much so that Svilar seems to have cemented his place as the first-choice goalkeeper, ahead of Julio Cesar.
Luís Filipe Vieira on Mile Svilar: “We’ve followed him since he was 15. We’ve already had an offer for him, four times what we paid and where we would keep him for another two years. It’s important to note, Svilar is 18 and only focused on Benfica. He won’t leave.” pic.twitter.com/1QRHktSPWB
— Jan Hagen (@PortuBall) November 13, 2017
His start to his Benfica career was hardly ideal as a howler gifted Manchester United a narrow win in the UEFA Champions League – a match where in he became the youngest goalkeeper in Champions League history. Since then though, Svilar has redeemed himself, keeping two clean sheets.
His exploits have garnered a lot of attention towards his talent, having already been regarded as one of the most promising young shot-stoppers in Europe for a long time. The report suggests that Jose Mourinho was left so impressed by the youngster’s talents that he has “reserved” him for Manchester United.
Furthermore, it is believed that Sir Bobby Charlton had a word with Benfica president Luis Felipe Vieira after the reverse fixture between the two sides at Old Trafford three weeks ago. But, the Red Devils’ overtures have been snubbed, as per Vieira, who claims that Svilar is here to stay at Benfica.
Manchester United’s interest in the 18-year-old could stem from the fact that Real Madrid have still not ended their interest in David De Gea. Despite recent reports suggesting that the Spaniard is happy at Old Trafford, and is not interested in leaving Manchester United, the club could be preparing for the worst case scenario.
If Vieira is to be believed, though, Svilar is not looking to leave Benfica just yet, and for good reason. Manchester United, meanwhile, will have to set their sights elsewhere if they are in search of goalkeeping reinforcements, if at all.