Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Man Utd and Real Madrid CF target Axel Witsel will cost €40m insist Benfica


Axel Witsel
Benfica president Luis Filipe Vieira has admitted that he will be powerless to stop in-demand midfielder Axel Witsel leaving Lisbon if an offer of €40M arrives for the Belgian.
That is the figure of Witsel’s buy-out clause and, though Benfica are keen to keep the man they only bought last year from Standard Liege, activating that term of the player’s contract would place the ball firmly in the 23-year-old’s court.
 The Belgium international is hot property this summer, with Manchester City and Manchester United having been persistently linked with bidding for his services, while Real Madrid manager Jose Mourinho is also a big fan of the player; Chelsea too have been mooted as a potential destination.
And the interest comes as little surprise given the way Witsel instantly adapted to life in Lisbon and shone with Benfica in the Champions League last season.
But Vieira is determined that if the Belgian does go, it will not be on the cheap.
"If you pay us the termination clause of €40M we cannot do anything about it and the player will go", the Benfica supremo told Antenna 1.
"But, until then, we will be happy to keep him with us", he added.
 Witsel has seemed close to the Estadio da Luz exit door all summer, with various sources in Portugal insisting the player has already said his goodbyes to several members of the Benfica squad.
 Where he might end up is unclear, but Manchester City captain Vincent Kompany has pleaded with his countryman to make no decision before speaking with the English champions.