Manchester United are reportedly continuing to monitor Portuguese sensation Joao Felix, who is also wanted by arch rivals and Premier League leaders Liverpool.
As per a report from The Independent, Manchester United had sent scouts to watch Benfica starlet Joao Felix in action on Tuesday night in the Portuguese club’s 5-1 win over Boavista. The 19-year-old playmaker is also a target for fellow Premier League side Liverpool.
The teenage wonderkid started out with the youth academy of FC Porto, before making the switch to rivals Benfica back in 2015 and has grown rapidly during his time at the club. Felix made his first-team debut in August last year and has gone on to establish himself as a regular member of Rui Vitoria’s side.
So far in the 2018-19 season, Felix has featured 20 times across all competitions, finding the back of the net on 7 occasions, while laying on 2 assists as well. The attacking midfielder, who can also deputize as a striker, scored against Boavista on Tuesday night and set up a goal, catching the eye of the Manchester United scout in the audience.
Manchester United have plenty of options in their attacking contingent, but with Juan Mata facing an uncertain future at the club, there could be a vacancy in the squad, which Felix could come in and fill next summer. Dubbed as the ‘next Cristiano Ronaldo’, it isn’t a surprise at all that he has been linked so strongly with the Red Devils.
However, they face stiff competition from arch rivals Liverpool, who are also very much interested in signing the teenage sensation. The Reds were keen on recruiting an attacking midfielder this past summer, with Nabil Fekir being their primary target, but their pursuit bore no fruit. And with Adam Lallana’s future at the club also in doubt, a player Felix will be a welcome addition.
In a very short time at the top level, Felix has managed to make a strong impression. His exploits with the Benfica senior team have not only attracted the attention of Manchester United and Liverpool, but the likes of Arsenal, Atletico Madrid, Borussia Dortmund and Bayern Munich have all been credited with some degree of interest.
Felix inked a new deal with the Portuguese heavyweights in November last year, extending his stay at the club till the summer of 2023. And, it is believed that the new contract comes with a release clause in excess of £100 million, which could detract his potential suitors from making an approach.
Based on the performances that Felix has been dishing out this season, it is evident that the Benfica prodigy is set for a bright future in the game. But, it remains to be seen if either of Manchester United or Liverpool do act on their reported interest and attempt to sign him in the future.