Benfica manager Rui Vitoria turned to his youth set up in a bid to save his job after a faltering first six months of the season. After making such a brave decision, his side now find themselves top of the Premiera Liga in Portugal and have a strong chance of progression in the Champions League following a narrow defeat at the Allianz Arena.
A major factor in this turnaround has been the introduction and development of Renato Sanchez. Having long been linked with Manchester United, Sanchez certainly showed signs of warranting the potentially huge price tag that would be needed to acquire his services with his performance against Bayern.
18 year-old Sanchez has seen a dramatic rise to prominence over recent months, even earning his first international cap with Portugal over the international break. Having splashed out major fees on teenagers over the past few years, with Luke Shaw and Anthony Martial joining for big money, United look set to be among the frontrunners for the next young superstar of European football this summer.
Sanchez has been in dominant form in the Benfica midfield over recent months, and his performance against Bayern, who fielded a midfield containing the experienced Arturo Vidal and Xabi Alonso, only heightened his growing reputation. His influence across the pitch was remarkable for someone making his first footsteps at this level of the game, showing competence in both attack and defence in an energetic display.
So where would Sanchez fit in at United? With Michael Carrick showing signs of growing years with his performances throughout the season, and injury restricting the influence of Bastian Schweinsteiger, Sanchez could well provide the perfect midfield partner for Morgan Schneiderlin. The future of Louis van Gaal could well prove decisive, with Sanchez reportedly keen to link up with apparent United target Jose Mourinho. With a top four place seemingly holding the key to the Dutchman’s future, Boylesports offer odds of 16/5 for United to overcome Spurs in their next Premier League fixture. Find out more about Boylesports here.
With just seven games remaining of the campaign, United still trail rivals Manchester City by just a single point. With Leicester City and Tottenham seemingly having the top two spots secured, Van Gaal has issued a target for his team to overcome both City and Arsenal in reaching the third place spot. With nothing to choose between sides as we approach the end of the season, why not make the most of Boylesports.com free bets when making your choices for the weekend’s fixtures.