The winter transfer window in January saw a number of players looking for a boost to be in Tite’s squad for Brazil’s rumble in Russia
The European transfer window has just ended, and a couple of Brazilian players have been involved in several sagas. Some of them were officially finalized whereas the rest could have possibly been delayed until the summer. So, who are the biggest winners and losers from this recent “mercado”?
The most notable transfer saga among Brazilians was no doubt the one linking Philippe Coutinho with a move to Barcelona. The transfer was finally confirmed, but it is still too early to tell if the 25-year old made the right step, on the eve of the World Cup. Coutinho had the chance to guide Liverpool as the main man through the knockout phases of the Champions League, instead, he will find himself playing in the Spanish league where the title is pretty much already decided. The move has the potential to prove to be extremely successful beyond this season, though some might think that he should have waited until the summer to make the swap.
Lucas Moura has been in desperate need for extra game-time this season. After the arrivals of Neymar and Kylian Mbappé, he just had to leave. Tottenham seems like a good destination in theory, as they play in a top league and are still competing in Europe. Lucas is eligible to take part against Juventus this month, but it remains to seen whether he can displace the likes of Erik Lamela, Son and Christian Eriksen from the starting lineup.
Gabriel Barbosa’s loan-spell to Benfica was a failure as the Portuguese club preferred to give game-time to players they actually own, so that they can raise their market value and sell them for a higher price. However, some could question the attitude of Gabigol. His loan move to Santos is a good solution for all parties. The 21-year-old is still young enough to relaunch his career, but he must understand that there is no more room for error.
On other hand, one Brazilian who was extremely lucky in this transfer window is Shakhtar Donetsk’s Fred. The midfield-star was denied a dream move to Manchester City, where Pep Guardiola regards him as the heir to Fernandinho’s throne, if reports in English press are to be believed. The 24-year-old is experiencing the best phase of his professional career, and the Ukrainians did not make his transfer any easier, ahead of the decisive Champions League clash against AS Roma. Despite that, it still seems like that the Brazilian will join forces with the Spanish tactician in the summer.
It is worth noting that Roma left back Emerson Palmieri joined Chelsea to compete with Marcos Alonso for the left-back role, whereas countryman Kenedy left the club for a loan spell at Newcastle. Both moves seem to be promising.
The World Cup is a few months away, the January transfer window could ultimately make or break the hopes of some of the Brazilians who are still dreaming of a spot in Tite’s squad.