Juventus scout Benfica defender Grimaldo amid Alex Sandro exit talk

The Bianconeri are determined to hold on to their Brazilian star but are lining up replacements in case Premier League clubs lure him away

Juventus scouts will be in attendance at Bayern Munich’s Champions League clash with Benfica to assess Alex Grimaldo.

The Serie A side have highlighted the 23-year-old as a potential replacement for Alex Sandro amid the latter’s constant links to the Premier League.

The Brazilian has previously been a top target for Chelsea, who made a  €70 million (£62m/$80m) offer for him last year, and he recently  reiterated his desire to play in the English top flight .

Juve’s main priority is to extend the Brazil international’s contract beyond its current 2020 expiration, however, but they have made no progress in their talks with him.

Although he insisted that he is happy in Turin at the moment, the former Porto star suggested he will not be able to hold off the lure of the Premier League forever, telling reporters: “I think, one day, who knows what will happen?”

Fearing they may lose the 27-year-old at the end of the season, the Serie A champions are lining up candidates to take his place and will run the rule over Grimaldo on Tuesday amid his rising status at Benfica.

A former Barcelona youth player, the Spain Under 21 international joined Benfica in 2016 and has made 82 appearances for the Portuguese giants.

The attacking full-back has been a vital part of Rui Vitoria’s team, having started every game in the Primeira Liga and Champions League.

Interest in Grimaldo has been growing over the last 12 months, with Napoli originally linked at the start of the year before Tottenham were reportedly keeping an eye on him during the close-season.

Juventus have been aware of him for some time, too, and it was reported earlier this month that he is open to making a summer move to Turin.

As a key figure for the Primeira Liga side, Benfica will likely hold out for a big fee for a defender whose contract runs until 2021.

Juventus are also in danger of losing defenders Medhi Benatia and Daniele Rugani in the next transfer window, but the Italian giants are prepared to block potential exits for the pair as they hope to maintain the strength and depth of their back line.

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