One of the jewels in the Monaco crown is Bernardo Silva – and, like many of the club’s young stars, he has been linked with a move away this summer.
Chelsea, Real Madrid, Barcelona, Manchester United, Manchester City and Bayern Munich are all interested in the little midfielder.
He is emerging as one of the hottest properties in European football and a summer auction for his services could be on the cards.
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So our friends at Football Whispers have taken a look at what clubs would get for their money.
Who is Bernardo Silva and where does he come from?
Born in Portugal’s capital, Lisbon, Silva’s talent was recognised at an early age and he joined Benfica’s academy at eight-years-old.
He progressed through the youth ranks, helping the club win the Portuguese Juniors Championship in 2012/13.
Silva was promoted to Benfica’s B side for the following campaign and made his first-team debut in October 2013, coming off the bench late in a Taca de Portugal victory over Cinfaes.
Aged 19, he made only two more first-team appearances that season but his form for Benfica B, for whom he scored seven goals, earned Silva the Segunda Liga Breakthrough Player award.
But breaking into the first team at Benfica’s was hard. The club had clinched a treble during the 2013/14 campaign and strengthened that summer.
So when Monaco approached Benfica to take the youngster on loan in the summer of 2014, it was a deal that suited all parties.
It didn’t take long for Monaco to realise they had a gem on their hands. And, with only six months of Ligue 1 football under his belt, they paid £13million to sign Silva permanently.
He ended the 2014/15 campaign with ten goals in 45 starts, doing enough to earn his first cap for Portugal in March of that season.
The following campaign yielded just seven goals and only three assists for Silva as Monaco set up as a side that were difficult to break down.
Their football wasn’t particularly eye-catching but it was effective.
This season, however, has been a very different story. Monaco have been European football’s entertainers.
They are closing in on a Ligue 1 title and reached the semi-finals of the Champions League, knocking out Manchester City and Borussia Dortmund in the process.
Silva has been integral to their success. He has struck ten goals and has assisted a further 12, both the best he has achieved in a single season.
The 22-year-old now has an air of maturity to his game and that is what is likely to have brought
Europe’s big guns to the table.
How much will he cost?
The reported figure is £70million.
It’s a sizeable fee for a player who has only played in Portugal and France but Silva’s performances in the Champions League this season have proven he is capable of shining at the top level.
Where is his most likely destination this summer?
Silva seemingly won’t be short of options this summer and he is keen to play in the Premier League during his career.
“One day I would like to play in England or Spain,” he told the Times in March. “I want to play in one of the best leagues in the world, but for now I’m very happy here.”
Chelsea could be an option as Silva could play as one of the two behind the striker while Real Madrid and Barcelona are also understood to be in the market.
Bayern could provide Silva with the most alluring package as the club begin to plan for a future after Arjen Robben.
The Dutch winger turned 33 years old in January and while he is still an excellent player, he can’t go on forever.
Silva, coming in off the right flank onto his left foot, would be a more than adequate long-term replacement.
However, it’s the two Manchester clubs who are said to be leading the race. United have an abundance of attacking talent so would have to trim their squad to fit Silva in.
Guardiola has a similar issue at City but may deem Silva an upgrade on Raheem Sterling on the right of City’s attack.
Either way, as things stand, it’s looking likely Silva will be heading to the Premier League and specifically Manchester this summer.