On the quest of restructuring the squad for the sequence of the Serie B and the upcoming Brazil Cup, Palmeiras are feverishly active on the transfer market. Officially, Mendieta is the only newcomer so far. And although Anything Palmeiras’ policy is to avoid spreading rumours, there’s so much consensus in relation to not only players involved but also status of negotiations, it’s hard not to make comments.
Both Maurício Ramos and Maikon Leite are negotiating with clubs in the Middle East. Leite seems rather reluctant to leave Palmeiras, but has a more than uncertain future at the club after below-average performance for quite some time. Same goes for Kleber, who wishes to stay but might return to Porto in two days’ time; after all, two goals in eleven games isn’t what one expects from a striker. Márcio Araújo is also likely to be involved in negotiations, as is Ayrton, possibly in a swap with Portuguesa.
So, who’s arriving? Again, nothing of the following has been officially confirmed, but a few names seem ready for announcement next week:
Alan Kardec – the 24-year-old striker currently at Portuguese club Benfica is supposedly arriving in São Paulo this weekend to undergo medical exams and sign a one-year contract. He comes as a loan, so no transfer fee’s involved, only salaries. Kardec is a quality player and should go straight into the starting eleven as the reference point in Palmeiras new offensive line-up.
Felipe Menezes – also at Benfica, the midfielder is somewhat of a wild card, seemingly whirlpooled into the Palmeiras/Kardec negotiation. I have no idea what to expect from this one.
Sebastián Eguren – the experienced defensive midfielder from Uruguay is currently serving the national squad during the Confederations Cup. Rumours are the deal’s already closed and will be announced as soon as the tournament is over. No transfer fee here either: Eguren’s contract with Libertad/PAR is about to expire and they have already come to a gentlemen’s agreement. The 32-year-old should be another good reinforcement (after all, he’s in the national squad of the current South America champions), although peak performance might be a thing of the past.
Luis Ricardo – in the crosshairs of several clubs, the talented Portuguesa right-back apparently has a soft spot for Palmeiras: recently the player has been praising the club and its history. Negotiations are well advanced, but Portuguesa know how to play ball and no favours are to be expected.
— ooo —
Through informal channels, then echoed by mainstream media, we learnt that Palmeiras president Paulo Nobre has taken a personal loan – in fact, the second since he took office – and injected the money into Palmeiras. We’re not talking peanuts here, but several million US dollars.
Paulo Nobre is a wealthy man. But his buzz word is “professionalism”. From the outset he made it clear: he would not invest in or loan his money to Palmeiras. He has not kept that promise. Three reflections:
1) Palmeiras’ financial situation is worse than anyone could imagine, including Paulo Nobre. Two years of Arnaldo Tirone by the steering wheel proved disastrous. Not that we didn’t know that. But again, the scale… It’s worth repeating: it’s worse than anyone could imagine. Much worse. If it wasn’t, Nobre wouldn’t be going against his beliefs and inject his own money into the club. Rest assured all other options currently available have been tried and failed. If new players are soon to be announced, it’s thanks to this fresh money coming in.
Why is there still no master sponsor? I don’t know. I only know that Nobre and his men are working tirelessly. Which still leaves me confident good news will come, just as they did when Palmeiras’ basketball crew was feeling the slipknot tighten.
2) Our president is committed. Not only is he working hard, but also risking part of his personal wealth, which is unfortunate, but nevertheless a strong indicator. And I cannot but respect him for that.
3) Nobre is confident he will have success. Injecting millions of dollars into Palmeiras is not for the faint of heart nor indecisive.
Ahead of us, another week without games. But trust me, not without thrills.
Scoppia che la vittoria è nostra!