Newcastle United’s bid to sign wonderkid Matheus Franca from Flamengo has fallen short of the asking price, Fabrizio Romano has revealed.
The versatile attacking midfielder has already made 28 appearances for Flamengo, scoring seven times and the 18-year-old is wanted by Newcastle.
Romano claimed that Eddie Howe’s side have had a bid of around €16m (£14m) rejected, with the Brazilian club wanting around €20m (£17.6m) – and it remains to be seen whether a deal will be struck before the end of the window.
Speaking on the Here We Go Podcast, Romano stated that not only are Newcastle currently short with their own valuation, but there are other clubs also interested in a deal for the midfielder.
He said: “They made a second bid last week for Franca, it was a bid around €16m total package.
“The answer from Flamengo was no. From what I’m told, Flamengo want €20m. Also, Olympique Lyon are interested in the player; Real Madrid have sent their scouts to keep an eye on him; but Newcastle are the priority for Franca, so let’s see how it will continue.”
If Newcastle do secure Franca’s signature, it seems likely that he will be a signing for the future rather than one who comes into the first team straight away.
Although he could provide cover for Miguel Almiron or Joelinton, he will need regular minutes to develop, and a loan move – perhaps back to Flamengo – could be beneficial once his future is secured at Newcastle.
He has “a very good understanding of the game” according to Flamengo youth coach Fabio Matias, whose comments certainly suggest Franca could bring a lot of outstanding technical quality as an attacking midfielder.
Considering Newcastle have Bruno Guimaraes and Joelinton on their books, they will be hoping that the increasing Brazilian contingent at the club could help convince Franca to join over the likes of Lyon.