Aston Villa are the latest team to be linked with a move for Sporting Lisbon midfielder Manuel Ugarte who is in high demand.
In the past two weeks, Ugarte has been linked with Liverpool, Leeds, Chelsea, and Arsenal, with Villa the latest team to step up their interest.
This is according to Football Transfers, who are claiming that Villa are “the frontrunners” to sign the Portuguese midfielder this summer.
With Unai Emery’s side looking good to achieve a European spot for next season, the club are seemingly targeting the best young talent in order to challenge the big boys going forward and Ugarte could be the perfect man for the Midlands side.
The 22-year old has appeared 45 times in all competitions this season for Sporting from defensive midfield, possessing an elite ball-carrying ability, something that could compliment Douglas Luiz and John McGinn’s brutish nature well in Emery’s midfield.
With a release clause of £52million (per the Daily Mail), Villa would be smashing their transfer record by almost £20million if they were to pull off a move for Ugarte, but they will know that it won’t be an easy task persuading the young talent to move to Villa Park when the likes of Liverpool, Arsenal and Chelsea are lurking.
Linked with so many teams, the reports of Ugarte’s next destination are set to make for an intense summer saga.