Arsenal Have ‘Intensified’ Their Pursuit Of ‘Next Bruno Fernandes’ But He Could Cost £103M

Arsenal are keeping very close tabs on Benfica midfielder Joao Neves, according to TBRFootball.

The website claims that the Gunners have “intensified” their interest in the Portuguese international over the past month, having sent scouts to watch him on three separate occasions.

Neves is said to be among the targets that sporting director Edu and manager Mikel Arteta are considering as they look to strengthen the club’s midfield ahead of next season.

Real Sociedad’s Martin Zubimendi is still thought to be the main target but there are doubts about whether the Spaniard is keen on moving to England.

Douglas Luiz also remains on the club’s radar but he is expected to sign a new contract at Aston Villa. His fellow Brazilian, Bruno Guimaraes, meanwhile is another player who could be targeted but only if Newcastle are willing to accept bids below his £100m release clause.

What do Arsenal fans need to know about Neves?

The 19-year-old has already been dubbed the “next Bruno Fernandes” by some in the media, and he has actually been praised by the Manchester United captain, who said back in March:

“I know he is ready for that big jump. He is an excellent player, he’s with the national team… that’s also why the big clubs are after him.”

United have actually been mentioned as another potential suitor for Neves who has impressed for both club and country this season.

The Benfica star won’t be available on the cheap

Neves reportedly has a €120m (£103m) release clause in his contract and it is believed that Benfica won’t consider selling the midfielder for below that amount.

Considering Arsenal’s transfer record stands at £105m, they would have to think very carefully before splashing out a very similar figure on a teenager, who still has a lot to prove at the highest level.

David Tully

David Tully

David has worked as a football reporter for the last fifteen years. Having started as an intern at Snack Media, he then went on to become a freelancer, working on various different sites. At the start of 2023, he took up his current role as content writer for National World's Football News Network.