Jose Fonte transfer request gets Manchester United and Liverpool fans excited
Southampton captain Jose Fonte has handed in a transfer request, prompting talk that he could move to Manchester United in the January transfer window.
Fonte was part of Portugal's victorious Euro 2016 squad, has been linked with both Manchester United and Liverpool in recent months.
Fonte is a client of Jorge Mendes, who also represents United manager Jose Mourinho. He also remains good friends with Liverpool centre-back and former Southampton teammate Dejan Lovren.
The 33-year-old has been on Southampton's books since 2010, joining the club when they were in League One. He has made more than 250 league appearances for them.
And the BBC quote Saints director of football Les Reed, who explained:
"He's made it very clear he would like to explore the opportunities for a transfer."
"That's where we are at the moment, José wants to leave the club. He's formally asked for a transfer," Reed added.
Fonte's contract does not expire until the summer of 2018, but United and Liverpool fans are already getting excited about the prospect of adding the experienced centre-back to their ranks.
United could use cover while Eric Bailly is away at the Africa Cup of Nations.
Jose Fonte hands in transfer request, I wouldn't mind if Jose Mourinho put in a cheeky bid for him....
— Nathan Timblin (@NathanTimblin) January 5, 2017
Fonte ! Plz Mourinho
— ⚡𝐁ÍÓ𝐃Ú𝐍 ʏʙɴʟ (@AbiodunFord) January 5, 2017
— Paul Burton 🔰 (@PaulBurton_15) January 5, 2017
But Liverpool have a tendency to raid the south coast for talented players. Sadio Mane, Nathaniel Clyne, Adam Lallana and Lovren have all made the move from Southampton to Merseyside in recent seasons.
Naturally, that talk has only continued in the light of Fonte's transfer request.
BREAKING: Southampton club captain Jose Fonte has handed in a transfer request.
Well.. you know what that means pic.twitter.com/rB2fHgXX0b
— LFC Transfer Room (@LFCTransferRoom) January 5, 2017
— Elliot Saunders (@EllSaunders17) January 5, 2017
Would love Fonte at anfield , quality defender
— Sam (@sliverslfc) January 5, 2017
Liverpool are thought not to be desperate to add a defender to their ranks, especially with Joel Matip shunning AFCON to help the Reds domestically.
However, the availability of a player with whom many squad members are familiar could allow them to make an exception.