The father of Sporting CP winger Joelson Fernandes claims Liverpool held meetings over a potential transfer. The teenager decided to stay put, however.
The father of Joelson Fernandes certainly has a lot to say about interest in his son. Eusébio Mango Fernandes, who also manages the teenager, claims several major clubs wanted Fernandes this year.
In an interview with Guinean outlet Jornal O Democrata e Mídia, Fernandes Sr. claims he had monetary offers from clubs. Ajax offered £900k, Liverpool £2.7m, Manchester City £4m, Paris Saint-Germain £4.5m, and then Arsenal apparently went all-out by offering £18m.
But instead, the younger Fernandes remains at Sporting CP.
Interestingly, Liverpool appear to have done more than just offer a fee. They apparently held three meetings over the player – the only club named to have done so – and revealed their plans for Fernandes.
Liverpool wanted to bring the teenager in and, despite him being only 17, use him as the backup for Sadio Mane on the left-wing.
“I thought that in life money is not everything,” said Fernandes Sr, before adding that he owes a debt of gratitude to Sporting.
What RTK has to say
Most of this is very believable. Joelson Fernandes is a highly-rated teenage winger and we would believe that Liverpool had a look at him. It’s also understandable if they held multiple meetings over the player – we know the club is thorough when it comes to transfers.
£2.7m, too, sounds like a reasonable fee for a 17-year-old – even if Arsenal apparently offer 6x that.
But we don’t quite believe that Liverpool planned on using the player as backup for Mane. Instead, it’s more likely that they see/saw him as a Harvey Elliott-type. As in, the long-term successor but a youth player for now who has first-team games peppered in.
For one, it’s quite a jump to go from seeing a £2.7m untested teenager as your backup to later paying £41m to sign Diogo Jota for that role.
But this is certainly one to watch.