‘Go to Man City’ - Bernardo Silva’s message to £102m Man Utd & Arsenal ‘target’

Bernardo Silva has said e would like Joao Neves to join him at Manchester City.Bernardo Silva has said e would like Joao Neves to join him at Manchester City.
Bernardo Silva has said e would like Joao Neves to join him at Manchester City. | Getty Images
The Portugal midfielder has attracted interest from a number of Europe’s top clubs.

Bernardo Silva has said he would encourage Benfica protegee Joao Neves to join Manchester City this summer.

The teenager is one of the most coveted young players in Europe and reports in Portugal have suggested City are interested in securing his signature along with Manchester United and Arsenal. Record have claimed United saw an initial offer of €60 (£51m) rejected.

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The same outlet report Neves has a buyout clause of €120 (£102m) but a fee of €100m (£85m) would ‘be difficult to resist’.

Neves is already accustomed to rubbing shoulders with players from Europe’s elite squad. He’s part of this summer’s Euro 2024 squad that includes stars from City, United, Liverpool, Barcelona and Paris Saint-Germain, meaning there could be plenty of opportunities for team-mates to pitch their clubs as a potential next venue.

And speaking in a press conference on Friday, Silva, another Benfica graduate, said the Etihad would be a great place for Neves to continue his development. “I’d tell him to go to Manchester City,” the City midfielder said ahead of Saturday’s friendly against Croatia.

“It’s not easy. He’s a player who, given his success last season, has many clubs wanting him. As a Portuguese and a player I like, I’d like to see him alongside me. But I want the best for him.

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“Guardiola? I don’t need to convince him,” Silva added. “Joao Neves is already convincing because of the way he works and the energy he brings to the game. 

“He won’t be a cheap player, it won’t be easy for many clubs to get in on the act. Let him make his decision, let it be what’s best for him. If he keeps up this energy, he has a very good future ahead of him.”

Silva’s comments are similar to those of Bruno Fernandes, who claimed in November that he would like to see Neves play alongside him at Old Trafford. "He's an excellent player and an excellent kid, very professional, he will have a bright future wherever he goes,” said the United skipper.

“I would love to have him by my side because he has quality and will have a bright future. It depends on him. What I want most is the best for him."

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Meanwhile, Portugal manager Roberto Martinez recently said Neves could ‘100 percent play for Manchester United’ and is ‘technically very strong’.

The 19-year-old, who only made his senior Benfica debut in December 2022, played 55 times this season and missed just one game.

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