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Man United joined by this PL giants in the race for 18-year-old wonderkid

LISBON, PORTUGAL - SEPTEMBER 24: Nuno Mendes of Sporting CP during the UEFA Europa League third qualifying round match between Sporting CP and Aberdeen at Estadio Jose Alvalade on September 24, 2020 in Lisbon, Portugal. Football Stadiums around Europe remain empty due to the Coronavirus Pandemic as Government social distancing laws prohibit fans inside venues resulting in fixtures being played behind closed doors. (Photo by Carlos Rodrigues/Getty Images)

Chelsea to battle Manchester United for Nuno Mendes

According to Portuguese outlet Record via Sport Witness (h/t The Mirror), Chelsea have entered the fray for Manchester United target Nuno Mendes.

The 18-year-old is coming off an excellent season, cementing his reputation as one of the best young left-backs in Europe. He made 35 appearances for Sporting this season, scoring once and assisting two more. (h/t Transfermarkt)

His performances not just garnered the attention of United but also Manchester City. With Chelsea also in the fray, the Red Devils will not have it easy.

Mendes has been chosen for the Portuguese squad for the Euros (Photo by MIGUEL RIOPA/AFP via Getty Images)

The Blues have already gotten in touch with the player’s representatives ahead of the summer transfer window. This comes after Mendes’ agent, Miguel Pinho made the trip to England last week.

Emerson Palmieri has struggled to make a mark at Stamford Bridge while Marcos Alonso has been given a new lease of life under Thomas Tuchel. the latter though, is not young anymore and can often be found out while defending.

In Mendes, Chelsea could very well get themselves a solid long-term solution to their woes. He has improved leaps and bounds in recent months and deservedly made the Portugal squad for the Euros.

Mendes is a regular for Sporting (Photo by Carlos Rodrigues/Getty Images)

While United have shown interest in the player, there are a number of reasons that could prevent them from securing his signature this summer. One of them is Sporting’s insistence that Mendes’ £60.25m release clause be met in full.

With Luke Shaw and Alex Telles already at the club, it makes little sense for the Red Devils to go big on Mendes. After all, we are already in the market for a striker and a centre-back, to begin with.

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Mendes made his senior debut for Sporting last season and has since emerged as a key player for the Portuguese giants. He played a key role in their Primeira Liga win this season, their first in 19 years.

Written by Pranav Nair

An Engineering postgraduate with a keen interest in statistics, pop culture and football.

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