Watford have stepped up their increase in Reading star Lucas Joao, according to reports.

The Angola international netted 38 goals in less than 100 appearances since joining in 2019 and has seen interest gather momentum during pre-season.

Reports over the weekend claim that Turkish giants Besiktas have offered between £2.5m and £3m for the former Sheffield Wednesday forward.

Fresh reports from Darren Witcoop, Sunday Mirror Sports News Editor, claims that the Hornets are "stepping up their interest" with Joao previously "down on their list" but "things have changed."

With a 20 per cent sell on fee owed to the Owls and the club unable to reinvest any transfer fees garnered due to an EFL transfer embargo, many supporters have emphasised his importance to the Royals next season.

Key performers such as Josh Laurent, John Swift and Andy Rinomhota have already moved on- all refusing new deals from the club.

This news comes days after fellow striker George Puscas, who spent the second half of last season on loan in Italy, has been linked with a continental return.

Serie B side Bari are reportedly hoping to beat top-flight clubs Genoa, Sampdoria and Cagliari.