By Jonty Banks

10th Apr, 2023 | 10:10am

Aston Villa transfer target Pedro Goncalves living up to Bruno Fernandes billing after perfect 10/10 performance

Aston Villa transfer target Pedro Goncalves continued to live up to his billing as the next Bruno Fernandes with a perfect 10/10 performance for Sporting Lisbon on Sunday night (9 April).

The Portuguese playmaker was on hand to deliver an attacking masterclass in their 4-3 victory against Casa Pia, scoring a goal and providing two assists to take Sporting Lisbon up to fourth in the Primeira Liga table.

The 24-year-old’s incredible performance made him the first player of the 2022/23 Primeira Liga season to achieve the perfect 10 rating on SofaScore and added further proof as to why Aston Villa must dig deep into their pockets for this highly talented attacker.

The Villans have previously been linked with a summer transfer for Goncalves, who has netted 13 goals and provided nine assists from just 26 league appearances this season.

Portuguese newspaper Record (20 March, page 17), claimed that Villa are set to make a move for the attacking midfielder this summer, although his £70million release clause could make a move complicated.

However, on the evidence of Sunday’s perfect performance, Wes Edens and Nassef Sawiris would be more than justified in breaking the bank and smashing the club’s previous club record fee of £33million, which was forked out for Emi Buendia.

Over the course of his 90-minute showing, Goncalves provided five key passes, created three big chances and had four shots on target. [SofaScore]

The attacker is renowned for his ability to carry the ball with pace and precision – in an almost Bernado Silva-like fashion – and he exemplified this trait by successfully completing two of his three dribbles and drawing two fouls.

Goncalves also managed to record a 60% success rate on his ten attempted crosses while playing four accurate long balls.

After bursting onto the English footballing scene when netting a spectacular winner against Arsenal in the Europa League round of 16, Goncalves would certainly have left plenty of chins wagging, but this performance may have made the attacker one of the most desired players in European football.

Aston Villa must not be afraid to go all guns blazing for this potential world-class playmaker, and if they have to pay the £70million price tag, so be it.

In other Aston Villa news, Unai Emery might have a new star on the block after an injury expert shared news on a first-team ace.