Manchester United have sent representatives to Portugal to monitor the progress of Porto midfielder Danilo Pereira ahead of a potential bid over the summer, according to reports.
Jose Mourinho, clearly conscious of Michael Carrick‘s impending departure, has pinpointed a number of midfield targets prior to the summer transfer window, with Monaco’s Tiemoué Bakayoko also a reported target.
Pereira arrived at Porto back in 2015 and has enjoyed a superb season under Nuno Espírito Santo, making 29 appearances and suffering just three defeats.
And according to A Bola, club representatives, alongside scouts from Liverpool, were present for Porto’s 7-0 win over Nacional last weekend to monitor the performance of Pereira, who has a €40 million release clause.
At first glance, Pereira comes across as your archetypal defensive midfielder: constantly charging around the pitch, making tackles and professional fouls, breaking up play and just being a general nuisance. But as you watch him over time it becomes clear that his capacity as a footballer stretches far beyond being a midfield workhorse.
The 25-year-old’s positional sense, for one thing, is remarkably sophisticated for someone with scant experience at the top level. He will always look to generate space for defenders to pass into, either by acting as an option or subtly drawing an opponent out of position.
Mourinho will know that Pereira, at the age of 25, is entering the zenith stage of his career, and United fans will be keen to see if the Portuguese takes a gamble on him over the summer.