Chelsea have been asked to fork out upto €20 million for the services of Palmeiras central midfielder Gabriel Menino, who is also courted by Atletico Madrid.
According to Mundo Deportivo, Palmeiras are ready to offload one of their key players in Gabriel Menino in the upcoming summer transfer window. The midfielder has already attracted the interest of European giants like Chelsea and Atletico Madrid following his performances in his native Brazil.
Menino does have an exorbitant release clause embedded in his Palmeiras worth €60 million. However, the club is willing to part ways with the midfielder for a fee in the region of €15 million to €20 million, perhaps in light of the pandemic that has taken a massive toll on footballing clubs across the world.
Menino began his career in the Palmeiras youth academy, rising up the ranks before gaining promotion to the senior side at the start of last year. Although a central midfielder by trade, the Brazilian has impressed the onlookers with the versatility as he has been used in numerous positions including the right-back and even as a left-sided midfielder during his short stint at the club.
The 20-year-old’s rapid rise to prominence, largely helped by his versatility has unsurprisingly attracted the interest of Atletico Madrid. Diego Simeone is known to be an admirer of any hard-working and versatile individual, so someone like Menino should fit right into his agenda, although it appears Los Rojiblanco are currently prioritising a move for Fabian Ruiz in the upcoming summer transfer window.
It leaves Chelsea in an ideal position to potentially bag a bargain in the form of Menino. The young midfielder should offer excellent tactical flexibility to new coach Thomas Tuchel in the middle of the park, as the German seeks to add more competition for the midfield trifecta of N’Golo Kante, Jorginho and Mateo Kovacic next season.
While the Blues have been linked with several high-profile individuals, including Matteo Guendouzi, someone like Gabriel Menino serves as a cost-effective option.
While the player’s lack of experience at the highest level of football does make him somewhat of a gamble, the fact that the midfielder has made his debut for the Brazilian national side is indicative of the quality he possesses in the middle of the park. At the age of just 20, Menino also has time on his side, and can only improve as a player, thus making him an ideal long-term investment for Chelsea this summer.