Fabio Silva’s club record transfer to Wolves is being investigated by the Portuguese authorities.
Wanderers paid Porto €40m for Silva last summer when he was just 18 and endured a tricky first season. Tasked with filling in for the talismanic Raul Jimenez - who spent the majority of the campaign sidelined with a head injury - he managed just four goals in 32 Premier League appearances.
He will be hoping to justify his price tag this season but things have not got off to the best start. As reported by Correio da Manha (via the Mirror), the deal that brought Silva to England is currently under investigation.
The authorities want to discern why Porto did not receive a larger proportion of the €40m transfer fee. They were due to profit around €30m after agent fees were deducted. That €10m broke down into €7m for GestiFute - owned by notorious super-agent Jorge Mendes - and €3m for STV, a company headed by Silva’s father.
However, on a financial report, Porto claimed they only profited €25m from the deal. This has led to questions about where the remaining €5m has gone.
The inquiry is part of a wider investigation into the culture of transfers involving Porto and rivals Benfica, named Operation Red Card. Recently, Benfica president Luis Filipe Vieira was placed under house arrest due to suspected tax fraud and money laundering.
The missing €5m is not the only irregularity in the Silva deal. A payment of €500,000 to PP Sports - owned by Pedro Pinho, who is under investigation by the Portuguese Public Ministry and Tax Authority - from Mendes’ company is also causing question marks.
The situation is ongoing but as of yet there is no indication that Wolves, Porto or Silva will be punished. This is good news for Wanderers who are set to kick off their Premier League campaign away at Leicester on Saturday 14 August.