After being present at the match between Rio Ave and Belenenses this weekend, Manchester City scouts also watched Benfica and Porto midweek league games, A Bola reports.

This seems to be a new strategy for Pep Guardiola’s side, Manchester City weren’t used to having scouts at so many Portuguese league games during the past few seasons.

Manchester United last season scouted in Portugal more than any other club, watching games from the top to the bottom of the league, back then City didn’t follow suit, but so far they’ve been to all three matches their neighbours have attended.

Portugal has always had a strong transfer market, beating sales records year after year. The country is also a big source for speculation, with countless players being linked to Premier League clubs.

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This summer, Manchester City spent €40m signing Ederson from Benfica, while United paid the Lisbon side €35m for Swedish defender Victor Lindelof.

With other rumours still going strong, we can only expect Manchester City’s scouting work to be a sign that things are about to get more serious in Portugal.

The City Football Group requires players for several clubs, so increasing Portugal scouting makes some sense.