According to The Mirror today:
"Liverpool have joined the chase for teenage midfielder Ruben Neves, [who] has been watched three times by the Reds this season"
Some info about Neves:
* 17 years old. Turns 18 in March.
* Plays as a defensive midfielder.
* 1 goal in 10 games for Porto.
* 46 apps for various Portugal youth teams.
* 3 apps for the Portugal U21 team (1 goal)
* 2014: Captained Portugal's U17s to the European Championship SF.
* Selected as one of the 10 'Talents of the tournament'.
* Youngest goalscorer in Porto's history. After scoring on his debut against Maritimo, Neves told reporters: "It was a dream debut, not only for my performance and goal but also for the win. I'm going to keep this forever and I hope it will be the beginning of a very successful career."
A profile on UEFA.com describes Neves' playing style as follows:
"Neves impresses with his passing precision, vision and astute positioning, showing great maturity for his age. Although commonly employed as a defensive midfielder, he shows no fear in getting forward, leading attacks and trying to score with his powerful right foot".
Barcelona attacker Cristian Tello is currently on-loan at Porto, and in a recent interview, he waxed lyrical about Neves' talent, and compared him to one of Barcelona's best players. He raved:
"Neves is fantastic with the ball, has great positioning on the field, and is aggressive, with a good job. With some small differences' he plays very much like Sergio Busquets"
Porto are seemingly aware of the growing interest in Neves, and the club has moved quickly to ensure that he won't leave on the cheap. This week, the Portuguese giants confirmed that Neves has signed a new deal:
"Rúben Neves [has] renewed his contracts with FC Porto this Friday. The Portuguese youngster will stay until June 2017, with a release fee of 40 million euros".
Liverpool have dozens of promising youngster at the academy, but very few quality defensive midfielders are on the verge of breaking through, so increasing the club's option in that area could be a good thing.
The Reds could also benefit from grooming a long-term successor for Lucas Leiva...
Author: Jaimie K