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Arsenal in pole position to sign Ruben Neves – Manchester United rivalling them

13/07/2021; 7:08 AM By : Steven D. Thompson

The usual suspects of this transfer season, Arsenal, are in talks with Wolves about signing one of its Portuguese star midfielders, Ruben Neves. However, Arsenal won't have things all their own way, with Manchester United also on the periphery as they are considering making a bid of their own. Previously, the Gunners have seeked a room for Celtic’s Odsonne Eduoard for replacing Lacazette, but couldn’t finalise the deal yet. But this time, they look more determined to conclude the transfer, even though they are in a harder competition.

Arsenal already in negotiations

The Gunners, as per reports from The Athletic, have already begun negotiations with Wolves over a possible transfer for the midfielder to move to London. Since joining Wolves from FC Porto in the summer of 2017, Neves has proven to be a brilliant acquisition and ambassador for the club, whether on or off the field.

After being a key player for them in their promotion to the Premier League in his first season, the Portuguese international established himself as a top player in the Premier League over the course of the last three seasons. According to Eurosport top football scribe Dean Jones, Neves' rise to prominence at Wolves has reportedly put him on the radar of Manchester United.

Manchester United firmly in contention

He added that the Red Devils are watching developments between the player and Arsenal closely as they remain in the market to replace the ageing Nemanja Matice. Also, Paul Pogba is entering the last year of his contract. A contract extension between United and himself is on the table but has not yet been signed. It, therefore, makes sense for the 20-time champions of England to look at possible midfield replacements for their French talisman. Also, a potential deal with French star defender Varane and strengthening line up with Neves would make the Red Devils a potential candidate for PL.

Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and his board will need to act quickly though if they decide to pursue the Neves option, as Arsenal seems to be leading in the race to sign the Portuguese star. Whether Arsenal or Manchester United eventually do acquire the services of Neves for next season, the cost will be a hefty £45 million, as Wolves value him highly.

Asking price favours the Red Devils

The asking price could possibly be a stumbling block for Arsenal, especially with Covid-19 affecting their income last season, as well as them finishing outside of the European League places. Manchester United has no such problems, as their second-place finish will see them playing in the Champions League for next season. 

If, as reported, both teams firm up their intentions for the player with offers, the player will then have important decisions to make with regard to his immediate future. However, top bookmakers put the Gunners one step ahead of the Red Devils.

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