Manchester United will need to act fast if they hope to have any chance of signing high-flying Santos striker Marcos Leonardo.
The 20 year old was a crucial attacker for the Brazilian club in 2023, scoring 13 goals in 31 Brazilian Série A appearances and three goals in four matches in the Copa do Brasil (Transfermarkt).
Still, his strong performances were not enough to prevent Santos from being relegated for the first time in their history.
Near the end of this past summer, The Peoples Person reported that United were interested in the young Brazilian.
In November, Leonardo’s agent, Rafaela Pimenta, revealed that the striker had become interested in securing a transfer to a European club as soon as the January transfer window opens.
“Already in the previous transfer market he had the possibility of being sold, but Santos’ sporting situation was very particular,” Pimenta explained, referring to Santos’ relegation battle.
“But the time has come to move. He wants to have a European experience and his time will come this winter,” Pimenta concluded.
In November, it was reported that Santos were prepared to allow Leonardo to depart the club, lowering their asking fee from his release clause worth €100 million to just €18 million.
With previous reports suggesting that United would face competition to sign Leonardo from the likes of AS Roma, this claim appears to be ringing true.
Portuguese newspaper Record (Page 5) reported that Benfica are in the process of preparing an official offer for Leonardo.
Should this report prove accurate, United would need to act fast if they hope to have any hope of signing the promising rising star at what is a bargain price.
Still, United’s sights may be focused elsewhere, with the club reportedly looking at the likes of Paulo Dybala as well.