Manchester United's pursuit of Arsenal target Ruben Neves is believed to be nearing a crucial stage. The Red Devils are expected to make a final push for the Wolverhampton Wanderers (Wolves) midfielder. As per Sky Sports, he Portuguese has been courted by both Premier League clubs, with Barcelona also interested.
The Sun reports that Erik ten Hag is an admirer of the player and is seriously looking to add him to Manchester United's ranks. Last year, former manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was also interested in bringing the Portugal international to Old Trafford.
However, Bruno Lage back in April suggested that his star player could command a transfer fee of as much as £100m. He said, via Football London:
"When you have that player, the best thing to do is improve his salary and years of contract. But who knows, when you have a top player like him in that specific position, that can defend and attack, and is a top professional and a great man, the big teams are there with £100million to buy these kinds of players."
The Sun claims that Manchester United tried signing Neves in January but their £35m was rejected by Wolves. The 25-year-old has two years remaining on his contract. The West Midlands club will be listening to offers for him this summer starting from £50m and onwards.
As such, Arsenal might be reluctant to spend that sort of money and may look for cheaper alternatives. The Red Devils, however, are looking to back ten Hag in his first transfer window and could fork out the cash to help him with the rebuild.
However, there could be a twist in the tale with the Portuguese opting for a move away from the Premier League with Barcelona also keen on his signature. Unlike Arsenal and Manchester United, the transfer to Camp Nou offers Neves an opportunity to play in the Champions League next season.
However, Wolves' asking price for Neves will not be easy to meet for the La Liga giants as well.
How will Ruben Neves help Manchester United and Arsenal?
Mikel Arteta's side are seriously lacking in depth in midfield. An injury to Thomas Partey earlier this season left them relying on Mohamed Elneny. He did a decent job in Ghanian's absence but cannot be relied upon to take the club forward. Granit Xhaka delivers good performances every now and then but lacks consistency and has his occasional outbursts.
The signing of the Wolves midfielder will provide Arsenal with a very reliable partner for Partey. The Portuguese is strong on both defensive and attacking fronts. He is also a threat from set-pieces and will only make the Gunners a more competitive side in the middle of the park.
The same goes for Manchester United. Erik ten Hag only has Scott McTominay as the defensive midfielder in the side and the Scottish midfielder's performances have been quite average this season. Neves will certainly tighten their leaky defense and give them more confidence in possession.
SInce joining the West Midlands club in 2017, the 25-year-old has made 212 appearances for them, scoring 24 goals and providing 12 assists.