Chelsea striker Alexandre Pato is set to leave the club this summer after the Blues decided not to sign the former AC Milan wonderkid on a permanent deal.
According to a report in the Daily Express, Chelsea have informed their Brazilian striker that he will not be signed on a permanent deal. Pato arrived in January transfer window to Chelsea on a loan deal from Brazilian side Corinthians. Having last played football in Europe for Italian giants AC Milan four years ago, the striker is a shadow of his former self.
Pato burst onto the European scene with AC Milan as an 18-year old in 2008 and raised a lot of eyebrows with his speed, accuracy and predator instincts. With his evident talent and a natural eye for goal, Pato was believed by many to be the next great Brazilian striker after Ronaldo. For a few years, Pato lived up to the billing by scoring goals regularly for Brazil and also helping AC Milan to win the Serie A in 2010/11.
However, at the start of the 2011 season, injuries began to hinder his progress. He was regularly bothered by his hamstring injuries and frequently missed out games due to the same. The following season his performance worsened as Pato went back to Brazil in early 2013 in a bid to revive his rapidly declining career. A positive loan spell in Sao Paolo gave him the opportunity to try his luck in Europe once again, but his lack of match fitness was the biggest hindrance during his time at Chelsea.
Chelsea provided Pato a second chance to become a European success story
With the loan signing of Pato in the January transfer window of 2016, Chelsea fans believed he could help their stuttering side given he finished a rather impressive 2015 season with Sao Paolo with 26 goals. His injury problems followed him to London as well, as he missed the first month of his loan period at Chelsea and then eventually made his debut.
Guus Hiddink had already admitted a month earlier that the extension of Pato’s loan deal is highly unlikely as the Brazilian only managed to appear for the club twice. The Blues are likely to move on three strikers this summer — Pato, another failed loan signing in Radamel Falcao, and out-of-favour Frenchman Loic Remy.