It was a surprise when we’ve first saw Leeds United included in a list of scouts who watched a match in Portugal this season. Then their visits started happening repeatedly, and they keep going for new types of missions in the country.
On Monday, it’s an interesting trip the officials made as they watched Rio Ave’s home game against Sporting, which the away side won 3-1
Newspaper Record, who reports the Elland Road side’s visit to Rio Ave, doesn’t say anything about a specific target the club were watching.
Sporting confirmed their good form under new manager Marcel Keizer, and had their show ran by Bruno Fernandes. For the home side, goalkeeper Léo Jardim and midfielder João Schmidt had a good match.
Rio Ave are well known for being the Portuguese club where Jorge Mendes has a big influence. It’s frequently used as a gateway for South American players in Europe. For example, Liverpool’s Fabinho and Man City’s Ederson both moved there before playing for bigger clubs.
The match also had scouts from Manchester United, Atalanta, Atletico Madrid, Crystal Palace, Deportivo La Coruña, Tondela, Basel, Utrecht, Granada, Hamburg, Levante, Lille, Newcastle, Olympiacos, Palermo, Eibar, Sevilla and Southampton.