Liverpool have asked Sporting about Pote, according to reports. The Reds must wait at least one year, however.
This comes from Record. They claim that Liverpool, as well as Manchester United and Juventus, asked Sporting about Pote ahead of the summer.
It shouldn’t be a secret why – the 22-year-old has been electric this season. His 20 goals helped fire Sporting to their first Liga NOS title since 2002. And that’s despite the fact Pote isn’t a recognised striker.
They signed the player last summer, essentially as a replacement for Bruno Fernandes. Somehow, he’s gone on to succeed even his success, bringing home their elusive trophy.
Prolific wingers/no.10s will always draw interest from big clubs and Pote – or Pedro Goncalves – is no different. But those clubs must wait, it seems.
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Sporting do not want to sell their prized asset and plan on giving him a new contract. They’ll boost his wages but also increase his release clause from around £42m to near £70m.
That’s a pretty sure sign that they don’t intend to sell this summer. But there’s also the fact they haven’t made moves to buy 100 per cent of the rights to Pote.
Sporting only part-own the player and they would almost certainly buy out the rest of his rights before selling him. As they haven’t done that, you can be pretty sure they aren’t selling.
Pote to stay with Sporting
By complete coincidence, we wrote over the weekend that Liverpool shouldn’t forget about Pote when shopping for a striker this summer. They’ve been linked before and he feels like a natural option up top.
Well, it seems they’ll have to wait. Pote won’t be moving this summer – but that doesn’t mean he’s staying with Sporting long-term. After all, they’re not removing his release clause but increasing it. There’s going to be a sale down the line.
We imagine Sporting will want to keep Pote at the club as they try to deliver in the Champions League next season. Let alone in an attempt to retain their league title.
Some good performances on the big stage will drive his price up, of course. Perhaps that sees them get their £70m. Maybe they can push the release clause further with a new contract.
Either way, there will always be a chance to sign Pote from Sportin – that’s just the nature of Portuguese football. Offer the right money and you can sign them.
Liverpool appear to have another year to decide if Pote is right for them, though. And if he does shine in Europe next season, that £70m won’t be far off reasonable.