Santos president Modesto Roma has confirmed that he has met with Manchester United for talks regarding Gabriel ‘Gabigol’ Barbosa amongst partnership discussions with the Red Devils, say Goal.
Roma has also said that conversations were held with Premier League rivals Chelsea, but any transfer discussions held with the London outfit were regarding Santos midfielder Thiago Maia to our knowledge.
The Blues had made an initial approach for Maia through Brazilian agent Giuliano Bertolucci last month and are expected to make a formal offer of €20 million for the 19-year-old.
“We had productive conversations,” Roma told Goal. “We didn’t come to buy or sell players, neither in London or Madrid. We came to build up relationships. There weren’t offers, but we did talk about partnerships. I talked to Manchester United, Chelsea and Atletico Madrid.”
Despite Roma’s words, Goal report that discussions were certainly had regarding both players who could well move on after the Olympics have concluded.
However, Inter Milan look close to signing Barbosa, with the player’s family the only factor holding up transfer negotiations.
“I can confirm that Santos have received an offer from Inter and now we’re all waiting for a definite decision to be taken by the player and his family,” Roma told fcinter1908.it.
“It will depend a lot on them, so if they give their consent, we will start to conclude negotiations with Inter. It will probably be [after the Olympics]. We’re all waiting.”
The lure of Jose Mourinho, Manchester United, and the Premier League may be enough to tempt Barbosa into snubbing the Italian giants offer in favour of a move, but Mourinho will have to move quickly to seal the transfer.
Barbosa has reportedly told Santos that he wishes to be sold to a club in Europe before the end of August.
Leicester have also made a £23m bid for the Brazilian international.
Callum Connolly, Pundit Arena.