Benfica president issues transfer warning to Newcastle United and Man Utd

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The forward would command a club record fee if reports in Portugal are to be believed.

Newcastle United have been warned they will have to pay a mammoth £103m release clause in Goncalo Ramos’ contract if they want to prise the talented forward away from Benfica.

The Magpies were one of a whole host of clubs said to be monitoring the 21-year-old’s progress over the last 12 months after he continued his impressive progress through the ranks with the Portuguese giants. Ramos netted eight goals and provided four assists during 46 appearances in all competitions last season but he has really come into form during the first half of the current campaign.

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Ramos got his season underway with a stunning hat-trick in a Champions League qualifier win against Danish club FC Midtjylland and that set the tone for a run of form that garnered a remarkable 14 goals and six assists in just 21 appearances. That form saw Ramos rewarded with a call-up to Portugal’s World Cup squad and he became the first player to score a hat-trick in the tournament when he led his side to a 6-1 hammering of Switzerland in a round-of-16 clash.

The forward retained his place for the quarter-final meeting with Morocco but was unable to help his side progress after a Youssef En-Nesyri saw the Atlas Lions become the first African side to reach the World Cup semi-finals. Despite that disappointment, Ramos remains high on the agenda of several clubs around Europe, with Manchester United, Barcelona and Paris Saint-Germain all said to be keen on a deal - but they have been warned they will have to provide a significant financial outlay to secure his services.

Benfica president Rui Costa said: “We have the sole objective of having a winning season, no player will leave – unless it is due to the clause – which at this moment is fundamental for the squad. What I can promise our supporters is what I did at the beginning of the year. This is a sporting project, not a financial one. Fortunately, we are not experiencing financial problems and we have no need to sell players.”

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