Wolverhampton Wanderers are reportedly ready to step up their efforts to try and sign Royal Antwerp defender Aurelio Buta.
According to reports from Belgian newspaper Het Nieuwsblad (via Sport Witness), Wolves are keen on buying the right-back, but face competition from fellow Premier League sides Watford, Southampton and Leicester City.
The story suggests that the Foxes could see him as a future successor to Ricardo Pereira if he leaves the club in the future.
The full-back has had a really impressive season in the Belgian top-tier and has managed to register an impressive five assists from his 18 appearances as well as one goal.
According to Transfermarkt, the defender – who can also play as a right-midfielder or right-winger – is valued at £3.6m, though, realistically, Royal Antwerp might demand a much bigger fee than that, even if his contract does expire in 2021.
Should Wolverhampton Wanderers sign Aurélio Buta?
While it is hard to tell just how well the Portuguese defender will get on at a higher level, he looks like a decent prospect. Furthermore, his versatility and ability to get up and down the right-flank sounds as if it would suit Nuno Espirito Santo’s 3-4-3 or 3-5-2 pretty well.
Matt Doherty is probably in his prime as a right-back aged 27, however, you can never be too comfortable and he could work as a suitable understudy to the Irishman.
His contract situation and the fact he plays for Royal Antwerp means that he should not be a too expensive signing, therefore, it’s a punt worth taking for Wanderers. He could turn out to be a top player and be worth far more than what they paid for him; or, at worst, they have signed an exciting prospect who can give them more depth at right-back and they have lost out on a few million quid.
Additionally, out of the four clubs interested, they are probably on level or just behind Leicester City as the most exciting prospect, though Watford and Saints may be able to swing him their way with a stronger claim for first-team football.