Report: Chelsea scouting versatile Brazilian midfielder Gabriel Menino
Transfer expert Fabrizio Romano claims Chelsea are monitoring 20-year-old Brazilian talent Gabriel Menino who currently plays for Palmeiras.
In the early 2010s, Chelsea made a lot of investment in young Brazilian prospects.
The trend arguably kicked off when they signed then-18-year-old Lucas Piazon from Sao Paulo in 2011/12.
Then the following season, they signed an even bigger Brazilian name in Oscar from Internacional, as well as Wallace Oliveira from Fluminese.
But then it stopped just a few years later. The last two young Brazilians talents they signed were Nathan and Kenedy in 2015/16.
It was a sensible decision considering that aside from Oscar, Chelsea simply did not gain much from these investments.
Not to mention the work permit issues that often came with it.
But it seems that Chelsea might have rekindled their interest in Brazilian talents, as Romano claims that they are currently monitoring a rising star in the Brasileiro Serie A.
“Yes, a new name for European football, for Chelsea and other clubs that are looking at him,” Romano told Here We Go podcast.
“We are talking about scouting, so no negotiation at the moment.
“But Chelsea and Atletico Madrid are looking at Palmeiras midfielder Gabriel Menino who can also play as a right-back.
“The fee would be around €20m (£17.2m).”
Brazilian news outlet UOL also ran a similar story a couple of weeks ago.
The report mentioned that Menino is under contract at Palmeiras until December 2024 and has a release clause worth €60m.
Menino recently got his first Brazil call-up in September and played a big role in Palmeiras’ successful campaign, winning Copa Libertadores and Copa do Brasil.
So what type of player is Menino?
Brazil manager Tite had his say about the versatile talent his interview in September.
“Gabriel Menino is a full-back / midfielder,” he told ESPN.
“He is an articulator [playmaker], and he can also be a wide player, a little more open, if necessary.
“And he has the know-how and training for that.
“Menino will have an attacking role, of being an articulator within the national team.”
Interestingly, according to The Athletic, the Brazil is planning to prepare Menino to eventually replace Dani Alves.