With several clubs lining up for a possible deal with Santos for 19-year-old Barbosa after his stunning performance in the Olympics, Manchester United may finalise the deal in the next 48 hours.
Dubbed ‘the next Neymar’, 19 year old Gabriel Barbosa has been in the news for all the right reasons, post his spectacular performance at the Rio Olympics, making waves across major European football leagues. While Leicester were confident that they had beaten Inter Milan, Juventus, and Bayern Munich for the Santos prodigy, the Sun reports that Manchester United may sign a deal with Santos president Modesto Roma in the next couple of days.
While Inter Milan and Juventus were seen as the front-runners initially, things started going Leicester’s way ever since Barbosa expressed his interest in playing in the English Premier League. Claudio Ranieri was confident that he would be able to add the Brazilian to his ranks. The Sun also reports that Modesto Roma travelled to London and spoke with major English clubs while also negotiating with Atletico Madrid. Manchester United were assumed to be out of the race because Roma wouldn’t agree to their proposal of paying in 4 installments. However, the report suggests that Ed Woodward has given in to Roma’s concerns and an announcement to the same effect will be made soon.
Barbosa’s addition to the Red Devils will be the next in a series of changes to form Mourinho’s dream team. The former may also become the seventh Brazilian to join the team at Old Trafford. If the deal comes through, Mourinho will not only have added the rising star to an already impressive squad, but will also have beaten his former club at it. The rationale behind United’s bid is to secure the services of a world-class striker to compliment and work with Zlatan Ibrahimovic. Mourinho is confident that the Santos striker is just what he needs in order to reach the culmination of his plans for the team. This is perhaps exactly why United decided to kill all competition by paying €26 million for the player and €4 million to his agent.