Newcastle United and Chelsea consider AC Milan star as Bruno reveals Benfica interest

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The Magpies are reportedly ready to offer one Milan star a second chance in the Premier League.

Former Manchester City midfielder Brahim Diaz is reportedly a target for Newcastle United and Chelsea.

The once-capped Spain international came through the academy system at the Etihad Stadium before joining La Liga champions Real Madrid in a £13m deal during the January 2019 transfer window. After struggling to make an impact in the Spanish capital, Diaz joined AC Milan on loan during the following season and returned to the San Siro in a two-year loan ahead of the 2021/22 campaign.

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After helping the Rossoneri to the Serie A title last season, the 23-year-old has continued to impress under Stefano Pioli, scoring five goals and providing two assists in 31 appearances in all competitions and netting the only goal of his side’s 1-0 aggregate win in a Champions League round-of-16 win over Tottenham Hotspur.

His form has led to speculation Milan could look to sign Diaz on a permanent basis by activating a £19.5m clause in his deal but The Sun have now claimed Newcastle and Chelsea are ‘keeping an eye’ on the versatile midfielder as his two-year loan stint at the San Siro approaches its final months.

Bruno reveals Benfica interest

Bruno Guimaraes have revealed he came close to joining Portuguese giants Benfica earlier in his career.

Premier League kit names and numbers will look a little different next season. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)Premier League kit names and numbers will look a little different next season. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)
Premier League kit names and numbers will look a little different next season. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)

The Brazil international is believed to be in negotiations over a new contract at Newcastle after enjoying an impressive first year on Tyneside. Since joining the Magpies in a £40m move from Ligue 1 club Lyon, Guimaraes has become an integral figure within Eddie Howe’s side and has been influential in United’s unexpected push for a Champions League place.

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But things could have been very different for the midfielder had Benfica been able to agree with a deal with Athletico Paranaense prior to his move to France. Speaking to the Portuguese media earlier this week, Guimaraes has confirmed he was ‘pretty excited’ about a move to Estadio da Luz and revealed the key figure that stepped in to ensure his first move into European football came with Lyon.

He told Eleven Sports: “There was interest, there were very advanced conversations. Today I can say that I thought I would go to Benfica at the time. It was pretty much all together. And then, I think that Benfica did not accept some conditions imposed by Athletico and then Juninho Pernambucano got in the way, other clubs also joined, and Benfica ended up giving up on the signing.

“But at the time I was pretty excited about going to Benfica. Now, it’s hard to say. After everything that happened it’s hard to say, but it’s a great club in Portugal and it was without a doubt a great opportunity, but Lyon was without a doubt a great path for me, I was very happy there at Lyon. Maybe at Benfica I could have gone and everything went well or everything went wrong, I have no way of knowing, but what had to happen in my life happened.”

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