Newcastle were last week linked with Brazilian striker Gabriel Barbosa, whose name was on many football fans’ lips after his heroics in the Copa Libertadores final recently.
Barbosa, who is on loan at Flamengo from Inter Milan, scored in the 89th and 92nd minute, to complete a turnaround for his side, and see them beat River Plate 2-1 in the final.
The Chronicle reported Barbosa was already being monitored by Newcastle, prior to his performance in the final which was broadcast live in the UK, having been scouted by the Magpies.
Before his last game of the season in Brazil, Barbosa spoke about his future, and it seems he would be happy to stay in Brazil, but admits his next move is up in the air.
Calciomercato report the striker said: “It will be a special game for me, it could even be my last at the Maracana, nobody knows.
“If I were to play with it again, I would still be very happy. For the moment, however, I have not thought of all this: I am thinking of the last matches, of the World Cup. Everyone has dreams, I am making my own here at Flamengo.
“We are talking but there is nothing certain, if the will of God is done I will remain here.”
With him seen as a flop in Italy, after his big money move from to Inter from Santos, he is thought to be available for around £20 million, and with the way he has been scoring in his native country, surely Premier League clubs will be angling for him to sign.
Barbosa was scoring for fun in Brazil
He scored a very impressive 24 goals from just 27 league starts in South America this season, adding a further 9 from 12 games in the Cup competition.
With another 11 assists on top of those incredible numbers, to say he has been prolific would be something of an understatement.
Newcastle’s need for goals from their forwards is glaring, and if they make a move for Barbosa, having fellow Brazilian Joelinton at the club, could be a major sway for the player.
In fact, with Joelinton still so young, and living on Tyneside on his own, having his countryman at the club would surely be a huge lift for him, with him able to have someone to relate to on the pitch, and in his personal life.
So a move for Barbosa could help Newcastle find their missing goals, by signing an out and out Brazilian goalscorer, while helping to bring the best out of their current one.
It remains to be seen what Steve Bruce does during the January transfer window, but if he does try to land another striker, 23-year-old Barbosa would surely check all the boxes.