Wolverhampton Wanderers may have made one major blunder in the latest transfer window, according to emerging reports…
Italian news outlet Calciomercato claim that the Midlands side seriously pursued a move for AC Milan striker Rafael Leao, who is owned by super-agent Jorge Mendes.
It’s also suggested that the 21-year-old was a player that Wolves boss Nuno Santo really wanted to sign but the Serie A giants weren’t letting go of someone they deem as a ‘diamond.’
The Portuguese talent is reportedly happy in Milan and isn’t going to leave the San Siro anytime soon. A killer blow for the Premier League outfit, no doubt.
Despite battling with the presence of Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Leao has still started the season like a house on fire.
In seven appearances, the former Lille forward has provided three goals and three assists whilst in the league alone, he has averaged 2.2 dribbles, one shot and one key pass per game, via WhoScored.
His dynamic playing style would’ve not only made him a like-for-like replacement for Jota, but also would have brought Raul Jimenez a perfect partner, especially as he’s been playing in off the left just like his old Portuguese counterpart.
The presence of the Liverpool sensation is something that Wolves are lacking – only Jimenez has scored more than once this season.
Leao has an incredible ceiling at just 21, in fact during his time in France, the 6 foot 2 attacker drew comparisons to Kylian Mbappe and was described by journalist Julien Laurens as “strong and quick” as well as being “a good finisher.”
Whilst former Sporting youth coach Tiago Fernandes believes he was even better than Cristiano Ronaldo, speaking to L’Equipe (via Goal), he said: “I pushed Jorge Jesus to take him in the first team and I said to him: ‘Yes, Gelson Martins has talent but Rafael is the best player in the history of the Sporting Academy’. At youth level, he was better than Cristiano Ronaldo.”
You couldn’t get a better endorsement than that.
Now valued at a whopping €40m (£36m) by CIES, you can’t help but feel Nuno and Wolves have missed an incredible sensation in Leao. They could long regret this one.
AND in other news, Wolves starlet with “great ability” the ideal heir to Diogo Jota…