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Real Betis rejected an £18 million bid from Leicester City for William Carvalho during the summer with the Portugal international now a target for Benfica, according to La Razon.

Jorge Jesus is the sort of man who knows what he wants and is never shy to admit it.

So, when asked at the weekend if he would seize an opportunity to reunite with his former Sporting star a few miles down the road at the Estadio da Luz, the outspoken Benfica boss made his feelings clear.

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“He worked for a few years under my orders and I know what his worth is. He is a great player and, as Benfica coach, I like great players,” said Jesus, who returned to Lisbon after guiding Flamengo to a treble not seen in Brazilian football since Pele’s heyday.

“I have no problem saying William Carvalho is an excellent player.”

Benfica have already backed their manager heavily, spending more than £70 million in the summer and investing a £22 million club-record fee in striking sensation Darwin ‘the new Cavani’ Nunez.

Photo by Damian Kosciesza/PressFocus/MB Media/Getty Images

Whether Benfica have enough funds left over to shatter their all-time transfer record again, however, is another matter.

La Razon reports Real Betis want £26 million for Carvalho. It remains to be seen whether the £64 million sale of Ruben Dias to Manchester City is enough to finance a deal for the 64-cap Portugal international.

The report adds Brendan Rodgers’ Leicester saw an £18 million bid rejected during the summer for the 6ft 2in midfielder.

The Foxes saw Carvalho as competition for Wilfred Ndidi – but that was before Nampalys Mendy breathed fresh life into his seemingly stone-dead Foxes career.  

However, with Leicester’s injury-hit squad stretched thin by domestic and continental exploits, renewed interest in January can’t be ruled out just yet.

Photo by Fran Santiago/Getty Images

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