Flamengo president Rodolfo Landim has told Calciomercato that preliminary discussions are underway over a permanent deal for Gabriel Barbosa.
Inter Milan and Flamengo are negotiating a possible transfer which would see Barbosa – also known as ‘Gabigol’ – return to Brazil permanently. He is currently on loan with Flamengo and doing very well.
Landim told Calciomercato: “For the moment there is no news, but our sports management is negotiating with Inter: the negotiations are in one preliminary phase”. Landim added that Flamengo want to sign Barbosa outright.
Gabigol: Just what West Ham need?
Barbosa has proven his goalscoring credentials in Brazil during spells with Santos and Flamengo. The 23-year-old is loving life in Rio de Janeiro with 26 goals and six assists in just 32 games.
Unfortunately for Barbosa, he has never really had his chance in Europe. Once tipped to follow in Neymar’s footsteps, the Brazil international struggled at Inter Milan and Benfica.
West Ham have been long-term admirers of the left-footed striker, who could be perfect for the current squad. The Hammers’ interest has been reiterated recently in a report by FC Inter News.
It seems Inter are ready to cash in on Barbosa. But Flamengo have the first refusal over West Ham. This could be a blow for the Irons, who desperately need a new striker in January.
After Sebastien Haller, Albian Ajeti is the only other striker on West Ham’s books. The Swiss forward is still adjusting to life in England and it could take him some time. After losing Lucas Perez, Chicharito, Andy Carroll and Jordan Hugill in the summer, Barbosa would have given Manuel Pellegrini more options.
If Flamengo can tie up this deal quickly, West Ham will need to look elsewhere in January.