Manchester City are showing a serious interest in Wolves midfielder Ruben Neves but fear Manchester United would rival any bid they make, Sam Lee of Goal reports.
It was first reported by The Sun earlier this month that City were scouting 21-year-old Neves, who impressed as Wolves held the Blues to a 1-1 draw at weekend and has stated he is a big fan of the way Guardiola’s City play.
And according to Goal, City held exploratory talks about a deal late in the summer transfer window, but neither Wolves or Neves’ agent, Jorge Mendes, could be persuaded to open talks so late in the day.
The Premier League champions could go again for Neves in January as they look for a midfielder after missing out on Jorginho to Chelsea, though he is just one of several options being considered by Guardiola.
Sporting director Txiki Begiristain met with Mendes at Wolves’ season-opener against Everton and they spoke again on Saturday, the two having good relations and having cooperated on deals for Nicolas Otamendi, Bernardo Silva and Ederson.
Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho is represented by Mendes, and the under-pressure Portuguese manager is reported to be unhappy at Mendes for being so willing to do business with United’s cross-city rivals.
Mendes has been made aware that Manchester United would be interested in Neves should he become available if it meant keeping him out of City’s hands. United’s transfer strategy of late has often included them chasing City targets, as they pipped the Blues to Alexis Sanchez by making him the Premier League’s best-paid player in January.
Guardiola dropped interest in Brazilian midfielder Fred to pursue Jorginho, but he is another City target that United pursued and eventually signed, and they may have to be wary of that threat again if they follow up on their interest in Ruben Neves.
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