It had been a while since Sporting last had a new wonderkid who the local papers could write dozens of transfer articles about. But now Rafael Leão has turned up.
The 18-year-old, who has only three appearances for the first team, is being linked with a Manchester City move, with the local media now taking the rumours very seriously.
It’s Record who has a story about the teenager today, claiming that Sporting are already planning to increase his release clause considerably, protecting themselves from Manchester City.
Leão is currently protected by a €45m release clause, but that’s apparently not enough for Sporting. The talks with his agent have already begun, although the new amount isn’t known yet.
The reason for the hurry would be the Manchester City interest.
According to Record, the Premier League side have recently sent an official to Lisbon so the clubs could have ‘informal talks’ about the player’s situation.
Sporting clearly want Leão to be a regular player in the first team before selling him, and plan to convince him to stay. That makes the situation quite difficult for City to land the youngster, especially if a new contract is agreed.