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Palmeiras’ premature exit from the Brazil Cup and Libertadores Cup will not have an immediate impact on the squad, which is good. With the exception of Felipe Melo, no one is leaving. Palmeiras and Melo are seeking a amicable settlement; the quicker things are resolved the better. 

mina_castNow, the medical department is having busy days. Against Barcelona, Mina, Dudu and Jaílson were injured. The latter two should be out for another three weeks, while Mina is looking at three months due to a broken toe. “I’ll come back, stronger than ever” he stated yesterday, posing with his cast.

Mayke, Willian, Thiago Martins and Juninho are all in the final phases of transition and are likely available on Sunday, at home, against Chapecoense. Also Guerra and Moisés should be fit for fight.

Then there is Arouca. After two surgical procedures early in the year, removing cartilage from his right ankle, the defensive midfielder is reaching the end of a long recovery period. Still, he has a few more weeks to go and there are doubts if he will make a strong enough impression to secure a spot in next year’s squad, which Mattos and Cuca certainly are already moulding in their heads.

Goalkeeper Fernando Prass is negotiating his extension, and so is left-back Egídio. There are a bit of mixed feelings related to both these negotiations.

Rounding off with a piece of unconfirmed news that Palmeiras have signed Botafogo centre-back Emerson Santos. Corinthians had a deal almost sealed but were apparently beaten on the finishing line. Emerson is to arrive in January of next year. More info to follow.

Scoppia che la vittoria è nostra!

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On Friday, ahead of Saturday’s game against Avaí, coach Cuca told the squad Felipe Melo would not be in the starting eleven nor on the bench. On Saturday night, after a convincing 2-0 against the team from Florianópolis, Cuca laid it out to the press: Felipe Melo will not proceed at Palmeiras.

Melo is an ambitious and strong-headed individual, never comfortable with the bench. Cuca does not see Melo’s playing style as ideal while seeking to emulate the characteristics of the 2016 team: speed, quick transitions, advanced positions paired with aggressive marking of the opponent. This was discussed with the player and mutual consent was reached: better part ways. Simple as that.
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With his extremely outspoken and self-promoting personality, Felipe Melo has divided opinions among palmeirenses. Personally, I have no problem with him leaving. I see better options in Bruno Henrique and Thiago Santos, paired with Moisés’ emminent return. Palmeiras are paying the price for a rather turbulent first six months, Cuca’s absence and subsequent return the pivoting factor. At this point, Cuca needs full backing to catch up for time lost, within limits reshape the squad and find that playing style he so much envisions. Anything not part of the solution is part of the problem. 

Melo has played only five games so far in the Brasileirão, he has not reached the limit that would prevent him from defending another first division team this season. There are however no indications at this point regarding his future: possibly, he will remain at Palmeiras for a few weeks, training in separate, while things are being solved. His contract with Palmeiras formally ends in December of 2019.

During his seven months at Palmeiras, Melo played 27 games and scored twice. Although his passage was brief, he certainly left his mark, always defending the club with blood and sweat.

Anything Palmeiras wishes Melo good luck in his future endeavours.

Scoppia che la vittoria è nostra!

— ooo —

UPDATE, 1/8/2017 – 12:55

We learnt today from Palmeiras’ director of football Alexandre Mattos that removing Felipe Melo from the squad was far from solely based on technical/tactical concerns. A number of incidents involving Melo had occurred previously, but had been dealt with internally. After Wednesday’s elimination from the Brazil Cup, Melo’s disrespectful attitude in the locker room reached new heights. As the news of the occurrence reached Palmeiras’ directors, they decided to remove Melo, having previously consulted Cuca regarding the possible impacts on the field.

Melo was formally communicated on Friday morning. On Friday afternoon, the player apologised to Cuca, club president Galiotte and the squad.

Any possibility of reconciliation was effectively torpedoed yesterday night: in a leaked audio, recorded Sunday night, Melo launches a personal attack on Cuca, in addition to voicing his wish to play somewhere else.

Melo will train separated from the rest of the squad, awaiting interesting offers. Mattos stated there are none on the table at the moment.

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Palmeiras yesterday announced having reached an agrement for forward Deyverson, belonging to Levante but playing for this year’s Copa del Rey finalists Alavés, for € 5 million. The news came as a surprise: Palmeiras have been negotiating with Sport’s Diego Souza for two weeks and previously tried Fluminense’s Richarlison for the position. Other players, like Chilean Eduardo Vargas, were speculated. Palmeiras certainly flew under the radar on this one, beating (at least) Wolfsburg, Leverkusen and Porto to the chase.

Not that negotiations happened overnight: they reportedly initiated some 45 days ago, on request from Palmeiras coach Cuca. In Deyverson, Cuca sees a player with enough physical strength to fight off defenders, but also mobility to play outside the area. Barcelona coach Luis Enrique in May described the 26-year-old as one of the most dangerous strikers of La Liga, a complete player, physical but also technical. “Very good in the aerial game, a born fighter, always going after that second ball. A strong finisher, with fast transitions”, he concluded.

Negotiations with Deyverson dragged on a bit due to Levante’s initial reluctance to sell, but the forward’s wish tipped the scale. “At first, Deyverson was not interested in a transfer, he planned on remaining at Aláves”, his manager explains. “But as the offers started coming, both from Spain and other countries… In the end, he chose Palmeiras. The project they presented gave us confidence. We feel joining Palmeiras is a step forward, not simply a return to Brazil”.

Without doubt, Deyverson will grab one of the two remaining spots in Palmeiras’ Libertadores squad. If successful at his new club, through the increased visibility he might also catch national coach Tite’s attention.

Deyverson initiated his career at third-division Rio de Janeiro club Mangaratibense, from where, in 2012 and at the age of 20, he left for Benfica. From there he went on to defend Belenenses (POR), Köln, Levante and Alavés, playing a total of 141 games and scoring 38 goals. 1,87m tall and weighing 81kg, the forward is expected Thursday in São Paulo for his medical before signing a five-year contract.

Scoppia che la vittoria è nostra!

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A few minutes ago, FC Barcelona announced the signing of Palmeiras’ attacking midfielder Vitinho, confirming last Friday’s featured article at Anything Palmeiras. The 19-year-old, with all of Brazil’s national squad youth divisions on his CV, comes as a loan move, expiring end of June 2018, with an option of purchase set at €15 million.

At Barcelona B, Vitinho is bound to grow significantly as a professional.

Best of luck, kid!
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At the end of June, Barcelona announced that they’d taken a gamble on Brazilian wonder kid Vitinho. The Palmeiras playmaker burst onto the scene at the top flight club, quickly establishing himself as a first-team regular – but can a stint in the Catalonian side’s ‘B’ team hinder or help the 19-year-old’s development?
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Vitinho
Source: FC Barcelona via Twitter

As one of the most highly rated prospects in Brazilian football, Vitinho (Victor Hugo Santana Carvalho) was always going to attract admiring glances from European clubs this summer. Barcelona have decided to take the plunge and secure the signature of the São Paulo-born attacking midfielder; Palmeiras boss Cuca has given the La Liga side the green light to tie up a deal for the youngster.

Vitinho is in need of game time according to his current boss after his progression stalled in recent months, having found himself as an unused substitute on a number of occasions. He’s made just two appearances for the top flight club this season, both of these in the very early stages of the campaign.

He is likely to go straight into Barcelona’s ‘B’ team, who have just sealed promotion from Segunda B and have a tremendous history of promoting young players into the first team. There is no competitive division for reserve sides in Brazil, which means game time has been limited for Vitinho.

It is believed the initial deal would be a loan move with an option of purchase in 12 months’ time. Reports from Brazil suggest that Palmeiras are seeking €1.5 million for the first season, with a further €15 million if they opt to make the deal permanent.

Barcelona currently have three Brazilian-born players in their squad, including Neymar, who was signed from Santos in 2013. Rafinha graduated from the club’s ‘B’ side before eventually breaking into the first team squad during the 2014/15 season. His advice and tutelage could be invaluable to a young talent such as Vitinho, with both players having been born in the same city.

Rafinha played a valuable part in last season’s second-place finish, scoring six times in 18 appearances and is hoping to help his club go one better this time around. Barcelona have been priced up as 10/11 joint-favourites in the football betting markets for La Liga success this season and their Brazilian contingent are likely to play pivotal roles in the campaign.
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Source: Mirror Football via Twitter

Barcelona’s conveyor belt of young talent continues to gather pace and Vitinho may find the transition difficult at first, but getting some first team football under his belt will certainly help his development.

Many promising players have failed to fulfil early hype and this is often attributed to their poor attitude in training. Vitinho will be required to knuckle down, work hard and impress the Barcelona hierarchy if he ever wishes to be lining up alongside Neymar and Rafinha in La Liga. His progress has certainly stalled in recent months but there is no question about the talent he possesses and Barcelona B could be the ideal place to harness it.

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Hours ago, defensive midfielder Bruno Henrique Corsini on social media announced his transfer to Palmeiras.

“Yo, palmeirenses, what’s up? I’m arriving to be champion with you. I’m very happy for this”, Bruno Henrique says in a short video clip, before signing off with a “Scoppia che la vittoria è nostra. Avanti Palestra!”. The four-year contract with Palmeiras comes at a €3.5 million price tag.

bruno_henrique_corsiniBruno Henrique has dual citizenship: Brazilian and Italian. In 2016, he transferred to Italian side Palermo after having participated in Corinthians’ victorious 2015 Brasileirão campaign. A regular for the Sicilian team, he made 33 appearances last season, scoring one goal.

At Palmeiras, the 27-year-old will face competition primarily from Felipe Melo, Thiago Santos and Tchê Tchê. His arrival is well timed: Melo yesterday underwent hand surgery and is out for 2-4 weeks, Tchê Tchê is currently far from last year’s peak performance and Thiago Santos gets booked frequently.

Welcome (home) and best of luck, Corsini!

 

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A well-conducted transfer if you ever saw one. Yesterday, centre-back Vitor Hugo held his last press conference (for now) at Palmeiras, before moving to Europe and Fiorentina. The Italians had been eying the 26-year-old for some time, but Palmeiras managed to hang on to the player, a central piece of the 2016 champion squad. In total, Vitor Hugo played 131 games for Palmeiras, finding the net 13 times – one short to make the club’s top 10 list for scoring centre-backs.

With the aid of sponsor/partner Crefisa, Vitor Hugo was brought to Palmeiras from second division side América Mineiro in 2015 for €1.5 million for 50% of his economic rights. Now sold to Fiorentina for €8 million, Crefisa recovers the initial €1.5 million, with the remaining being split between Palmeiras and other stakeholders – a neat little revenue indeed.

Crefisa actually chose not to cash in, but to redeploy the €1.5 million into the acquisition of promising 22-year-old centre-back Juninho, from Coritiba. Prior to Juninho, Crefisa also helped in the acquisition of Luan, the 24-year-old Olympic gold medallist, previously at Vasco da Gama. Palmeiras’ medium to long-term planning is clear: Vitor Hugo just left, Edu Dracena might retire in a year or two and Yerry Mina will move to Europe after the 2018 World Cup. In their place, we have Antônio Carlos (24), Thiago Martins (22), Luan (24) and Juninho (22).

Anything Palmeiras wishes Vitor Hugo the best of luck overseas: this talented, hard-working and charismatic lad deserves it like few others!

Scoppia che la vittoria è nostra!
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VH2

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