Corinthians striker Gustavo is now prepared to accept a “concrete proposal” to move to the Middle East after he turned down Arabian Gulf League offers earlier this year, according to his agent.
Gustavo, 25, has performed well back at his parent club in 2019 and is their joint-top marksman in all competitions on nine goals from 30 run-outs. This followed 30 strikes in 45 matches on loan at lower-league Fortaleza last year.
Such form has not gone unnoticed. An unnamed pair of UAE sides tried to land ‘Gustagol’ in the winter and a €5 million bid from Serie A-outfit Bologna was rejected this summer.
There is still hope, however, that a comprise offer of €6-7m – down from Corinthians’ €8m asking price – would be enough to strike a deal for the Brazilian before the transfer window closes in the Kingdom on August 31 and Emirates on September 30.
“Gustavo’s name is always spoken in this market, every window we receive requests and proposals,” said player representative Clovis Henrique of Ole Sport & Intermediacoes.
“Earlier this year, we received two proposals from the UAE but decided with Corinthians to stay in Brazil, since he returned from loan having scored 30 goals in the year and Corinthians wanted to use him.
“And it worked, today he is the top scorer of the team and was the highlight of the Paulista Championship. Now in this final stretch of the transfer window we are receiving a lot of requests from Saudi Arabia and the Emirates, we are waiting for a concrete proposal.”
Saudi sides boast an advantage in the chase because of the superior size of their foreign quota. They are allowed seven non-Saudi players, compared to the UAE’s four.
The impending deadline in the Kingdom, however, complicates matters.
Any successful move this summer for Gustavo by a UAE side would likely top the 2019 market-high €5.3m paid by Al Ain to Al Wasl for Brazilian forward Caio Canedo.
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