Wednesday close to €2m-rated Lucas João

Wednesday close to €2m-rated Lucas João

Sheffield Wednesday are close to the signing of Portuguese Under-21 international Lucas João from C.D. Nacional for a reported fee of €2m (£1.4m), on a four-year contract.

Should he sign, he will become Carlos Carvalhal’s ninth signing of the summer and will join fellow Portuguese Marco Matias in making the switch from Madeira.

Lucas is of Angolan heritage and joined Nacional in 2011 as a 17 year old, and his since gone on to make over fifty appearances in the Portuguese Primera.

He enjoyed a fruitful loan spell at Mirandela in the 2012/13 season, scoring a goal every 2.5 games in a thirty match spell. The commanding forward was called up to the full Portugal national side this March, but did not make an appearance for the Selecção.

Wednesday fans will hope that he can quickly adapt to the Championship and provide the goals needed alongside Atdhe Nuhiu, Stevie May, Sergiu Buş and Caolan Lavery to move Wednesday on from their 13th placed finish last season.

Marco Matias will look to strike a new bond with an old friend Lucas João

Marco Matias will look to strike a new bond with an old friend Lucas João

A quick glance at his C.D. Nacional highlights video shows Lucas to carry the odd-trick, a commanding frame and the ability to hold on to the ball and link play in the final third. From this evidence, he is neither a typical ‘9’ or ’10’, taking on the more regular duties of both.

Many will question his scoring record for Nacional, having only scored six goals in twenty-four league starts last season.

Like Marco Matias, Lucas João was partly owned by Doyen Sports, a subsidiary of the Doyen Group, an agency which loans football clubs cash in exchange for the owning of player rights.

Famous examples of their cash maturing include the sales of Eliaquim Mangala and Radamel Faclao from F.C. Porto. After purchasing a 43% stake in Mangala for €2.6m in 2011, Doyen Sports made in excess of €20m profit when he was later to sold to Manchester City in 2014.

Radamel Falcao’s move from the same club to Atletico Madrid saw Doyen receive €22m of the €40m fee after Porto took on another initial loan in exchange of player ownership.

Agency ownership is of course outlawed in English football, with frequent reference made to the Carlos Tevez/Javier Mascherano case as a deterrent to any clubs wishing to bend the rules.

Lucas João will become another part of a much changed Owls outfit, and will presumably be the first choice of his compatriot Head Coach after such a large fee has been parted with.

Owls Alive
TWITTER: @OwlsAlive and @hugh_wragg

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