Monday 23 October 2017

Who on Earth is Manchester City target Ederson Moraes?

The 23-year-old could be about to become the world’s most expensive goalkeeper.

By Max McLean

Manchester City look like they’re going to be one of the busier clubs in the summer transfer window, having already completed a deal for Monaco’s Bernardo Silva.

And it appears their next move could be a potentially record-breaking one for Benfica goalkeeper Ederson Moraes – but what do we know about him?

Is there space for him at Manchester City?

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Well let’s put it this way, there are certainly no strong contenders standing in his way.

Willy Caballero was released by the club less than a week after the end of the Premier League season, while Claudio Bravo has endured a torrid first season with the Citizens.

England goalkeeper Joe Hart has been released by Torino, and while the 30-year-old clearly has a lot more football in him, the feeling is that he is surplus to requirements at City.

Would it be a world-record fee for a goalkeeper?

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Yes and no – you might think it has to be one or the other, but you’d be mistaken.

The rumoured fee for Ederson ranges from £33 million to £35 million, either of which would exceed the £32.6 million Juventus paid Parma for Gianluigi Buffon in 2001.

But with the current exchange rate, a transfer of £33 million would amount to around 38 million euro – it would therefore be a record fee in pounds, but not euros.

What’s his career been like so far?

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Ederson was at Benfica at a much earlier stage in his career, but things did not go to plan.

At 16 years old, the Brazilian was brought to Europe by Benfica, but after two years he had not impressed, and was signed by Portuguese second-tier side Ribeirao, who gave him games.

Rio Ave then signed the youngster, and Benfica began to notice the improvements he’d made, buying him back in 2015. When first-choice goalie Julio Cesar became injured in the 2015/16 season, Ederson stepped in and earned not only Champions League experience, but also game time as Benfica won the Portuguese Primeira Liga.

Ederson kept his place at the start of the 2016/17 season and earned 17 clean sheets, second only to Porto goalkeeper Iker Casillas, as Benfica retained their league title.

What’s his style?

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Well he’s a bit taller than Claudio Bravo, and perhaps a bit better with his feet too.

At 6ft 2ins Ederson is said to be able to play with both feet, and is a decent shot-stopper too. All encouraging signs for a goalie.

City fans will hope that his youth proves as inconsequential as it has for the fresh-faced Gabriel Jesus, who has had no problems settling into Premier League life with Pep Guardiola’s side.

Is he a winner?

Last but not least, is Ederson a winner?

At 23 years old this keeper can certainly be content with his trophy cabinet so far – two league titles in Portugal, a Portuguese League Cup and a Portuguese Cup are what the Brazilian has to show for his efforts so far.

With Guardiola enduring the first trophy-less campaign of his managerial career last season, he’ll be hoping Ederson can continue to add silverware to his personal collection.

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