Manchester United have reportedly established contact with Portuguese midfielder Bruno Fernandes’ agent, over the possibility of a summer transfer.

Manchester United have been alerted by the potential availability of Sporting Lisbon captain Bruno Fernandes and have made contact with the player’s agent, as per a report from Portuguese publication A Bola ( h/t The Sun).

The 24-year-old Fernandes, a product of the Boa Vista youth academy, had spells with Italian clubs Novara, Udinese and Sampdoria, before he joined Sporting in the summer of 2017. Having enjoyed a prolific debut season that saw him plunder 16 goals and 20 assists in 56 matches, the attacking midfielder has continued to build on it this time out.

Fernandes, in the 2018-19 campaign, has already improved on his goal tally from last season, netting 22 times, while assisting 11 more from 39 matches in all competitions. The Portuguese international has also been entrusted with the captain’s armband, following former Manchester United star Nani’s departure from the club.

First Liverpool, now Manchester United - Bruno Fernandes is a man in demand (Photo credit should read PAU BARRENA/AFP/Getty Images)

First Liverpool, now Manchester United – Bruno Fernandes is a man in demand (Photo by Pau Barrena/AFP/Getty Images)

A firm fan favourite at the Portuguese capital club, Fernandes’ exploits this season have seen him garner admirers from across Europe. Premier League leaders Liverpool were reported to be interested in the 24-year-old attacking midfielder, while The Sun adds that Serie A heavyweights AC Milan too, are in the hunt for his signing.

But, as per A Bola, Manchester United have already taken their interest in the Portuguese a step further, establishing contact with Fernandes’ representatives, in order to explore the possibility of a summer transfer.

A midfielder with a strong creative side and an eye for goal, Fernandes could be seen as a potential alternative for Spanish playmaker Juan Mata, who is in the final year of his contract with Manchester United. Signing the 24-year-old would also reduce the heavy reliance on star man Paul Pogba to provide the creativity from the centre of the park.

Fernandes signed a new contract with Sporting last summer, extending his stay at the club till the summer of 2023. The report claims that there is a release clause worth €100 million in his contract and should any club meet that valuation, the Portuguese outfit might allow their star player to leave, given their financial struggles.

However, A Bola adds that the club are hoping to get him to sign a new deal, most probably in order to either remove the release clause or increase it to a higher value.

It remains to be seen if there is any truth to these reports and if so, it will be interesting to see if Manchester United are willing to shell out such a huge sum of money for the Portuguese in the summer transfer window.

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