Manchester United and Atletico Madrid could be set to go head-to-head for the signature of Joao Felix if reports in Portugal are anything to go by.
The 19-year-old has been one of the breakout stars of European football this season, scoring 20 goals and providing 11 assists in 43 appearances for Benfica, and is being viewed in Portugal as the national team’s long-term replacement for Cristiano Ronaldo.
Among his 20 goals, the youngster became the youngest player to ever score a hat-trick in the Europa League when he netted a treble and assisted a fourth in Benfica’s 4-2 win over Eintracht Frankfurt in the quarter-final first leg.
João Felix’s game by numbers vs. Eintracht Frankfurt:
84% pass accuracy
2 key passes
1 through ball
19 years old. ??? pic.twitter.com/1NkQUL8ywJ
— Statman Dave (@StatmanDave) April 11, 2019
His stunning debut season has seen him linked with some of Europes biggest clubs, with Barcelona, Real Madrid, Atletico Madrid and Manchester City all credited with having an interest while Juventus have reportedly seen a £75 million bid rejected.
However, according to Portuguese newspaper Record, Manchester United are willing to pay Felix’s mammoth £105m release clause in order to land his signature, although the imminent departure of Antoine Griezmann from Atletico Madrid has seen the La Liga side step up their interest.
Felix has been offered a new contract by Benfica, even though his current deal runs until 2023, although superagent Jorge Mendes is reportedly keen to force a transfer to one of Europe’s top clubs.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is keen to rebuild his floundering Manchester United side with young, talented players and Felix certainly seems to fit the bill.