BRUNO FERNANDES could miss out on a farewell outing for Sporting Lisbon this evening, according to reports.
The 25-year-old is due to line up against Benfica for the Green and Whites in the Lisbon derby, but could miss out due to Manchester United ramping up their pursuit of the midfielder.
Fernandes was close to leaving Portugal in the summer window, with both United and Tottenham Hotspur having held an interest.
After being denied his move then, however, Fernandes has knuckled down and continued to showcase his brilliant goalscoring prowess from midfield for Sporting.
With the Red Devils having gone back in for him though, a derby clash with Benfica would seem like the best possible way for the Sporting skipper to bow out.
But according to A Bola, negotiations with United have "gained new momentum", and the Red Devils will want Fernandes "immediately", not allowing him one last game for Sporting.
Club chiefs for the Portuguese side are convinced that they will only close the deal after the match though, allowing their talisman one final chance to shine in their colours.
SunSport understands that the deal still has some way to go, with United yet to match Sporting's price tag or agree personal terms with Fernandes himself.
The player came to Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's attention last season, when the midfield maestro banged in an incredible 32 goals in 53 appearances for his club.
He also impressed in Portugal's Nations League triumph last summer as well, showcasing his flair and creative prowess for his country.
Having missed out on his move, however, he has knuckled down and scored another 15 goals in 25 appearances so far this season.
And his departure could potentially be at risk in this window too, with Portuguese journalist Rui Pedro Braz claiming that Sporting are demanding £55million up front - with United only willing to cough up £42million.
Sporting have been planning for Fernandes' exit though, with Slovenian forward Andraz Sporar on the cusp of joining from Slovan Bratislava for £6million.