Roma defender Marquinhos is subject of interest from Manchester United, and they will need to fight off the likes of Barcelona and PSG for his signature.
Marquinhos has only spent 12 months in Europe following a move from Brazilian side Corinthians where he only made six first-team appearances.
His rise to prominence in the Italian Serie A has been rapid, building up 30 games of first-team experience, in all competitions, and helping the club finish sixth, just missing out on a European spot.
At just 19, Marquinhos became an influential player for Roma last season in central defence, showing maturity and assurance beyond his years.
The Brazilian U-17 internationalist has also featured at right-back for Roma towards the tail-end of the campaign.
Yet despite his positive impressions in Italy, Roma’s general style was fairly chaotic under Zdenek Zeman, and then, Aurelio Andreazzoli.
His form managed to demote experienced Argentinian Nicolas Burdisso to the bench, but as tweeted from BarcaStuff (above), he is definitely held in high regard.
Roma’s focus on ultra-attack was exploitable on the counterattack, leaving defenders exposed in crucial positions. On the face of it, it would seem wise of David Moyes to be sceptical of the Brazilian defender.
With Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic struggling to maintain regular starting positions, as a result of injuries, United should be looking for an experienced defender in the market.
Northern Irishman Jonny Evans has steadied the ship well, giving some sound performances, with respect to the circumstances.
Argentinian Ezequiel Garay is a target, reported by Paul Clennam at Goal.com, and his experience with Benfica at the highest level would be an important facet should he sign.
Possessing a wide range of strong qualities, especially his pace and ability to turn quickly to face his own goal, Marquinhos is relatively adept challenging in the air.
But perhaps, at just 19 years of age, the Brazilian still has time to develop physically, whilst learning first-team experience at Roma.
Ferdinand thrived from having almost 200 games with West Ham and Leeds United ahead of his move to Manchester United in 2002.
Even though he has been such a success in Rome, the €3 million transfer fee was an undoubted risk for a player with six games under his belt for Corinthians.
Fast-forward a season and his potential value stands at £13 million, which would be an excessive fee to pay-out for a teenager.
There is no guarantee Marquinhos would cement a first-team place at the club in his first season, so it would be a bit of a gamble bringing the player in.
Moyes is coming into an important part of United’s history, taking on the mantel from Sir Alex Ferguson—and feeling the pressure coming with it.
Talk of Wayne Rooney’s future may dominate the back pages, yet finding a reliable backbone for the start of Moyes’ era should be high-priority.
Roma’s Marquinhos, although an interesting long-term project, doesn’t fit that bill.