Benfica look to tie down €60m Florentino amid Man City interest

first_imgBenfica intend to tie in-demand midfielder Florentino Luis to a new contract when he returns for the pre-season programme on July 1 in an effort to stave off interest this summer, but could face fielding bids before they have the opportunity to do so.Manchester City and Paris Saint-Germain are long-standing admirers of the 19-year-old while Roma, under new manager Paulo Fonseca, were credited with interest in recent days.The Portuguese champions are already braced for bids from interested parties but want Florentino to sign a new contract as soon as possible in order to raise his buyout clause. Article continues below Editors’ Picks ‘There is no creativity’ – Can Solskjaer get Man Utd scoring freely again? ‘Everyone legged it on to the pitch!’ – How Foden went from Man City superfan to future superstar Emery out of jail – for now – as brilliant Pepe papers over Arsenal’s cracks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? Portugal under-20 international Florentino is currently available for €60 million (£54m/$68m) but Benfica want to raise it to the €100m mark.Florentino would be in line for an extension and a significant pay-rise under the terms of the new deal.He has been watched extensively by Man City and earmarked as a potential long-term replacement for Fernandinho, although Rodri of Atletico Madrid is Pep Guardiola’s immediate priority in that position.PSG, having lost Adrien Rabiot on a free transfer, are also seen as a potential destination for Florentino while Roma are believed to have made their interest known as they plan ahead for a new season under Fonseca and new sporting director Gianluca Petrachi.Having made the breakthrough to the first team in the early part of this year, Florentino established himself in the midfield with nine Primeira Liga starts as Benfica reclaimed the Portuguese title from Porto. He is a defensive midfielder represented by Bruno Carvalho, whose current contract runs until 2023.Florentino has been a regular in the Portuguese youth setup, winning the UEFA European Under-17 Championship in 2016 and the European Under-19 Championship in 2018, appearing in the team of the tournament at each of those competitions.Benfica are expecting to lose forward Joao Felix to Atletico Madrid in the coming days for €120m and ideally would not like to sell two of their young jewels in the same transfer window.Nonetheless, they would be powerless should a bid materialise in the next few days, before they have the chance to increase the release clause.last_img

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