Corinthians president Mario Gobbi rules out selling Paulinho
Corinthians midfielder Paulinho has been heavily linked with a move to Europe this year, with keen interest shown from both Inter Milan and Chelsea. However, Corinthians president Mario Gobbi has ruled out selling the player, at least until the end of the 2013 Copa Libertadores.
In a radio interview Gobbi said: "We renewed his contract and it was big for Paulinho, who is playing good football and is followed in the market. There is no intention to sell Paulinho. This is out of the question. We go through to July and we agreed a contract for him to stay here, not to sell him."
As with many players in South America, Paulinho is not fully owned by the club. However, with the board aware of the interest from big European clubs, they moved to secure 50% of the players rights during the contract negotiations. Audax-SP hold the other 50% of the player, who extended his contract to 2015.
This will not deter interest in the star though, and Corinthians fully expect further bids if the player impresses in the Fifa Club World Cup in Japan in December. The 24-year-old is slowly establishing himself in Mano Menezes Brazil team ready for the 2014 World Cup and will only see his value rise if he continues in this form.
Gobbi was keen to stress that Corinthians want to keep all their players, and are looking to add to the squad.
"We do not want to get rid of any player. Rather, we want to bring you the players in Tite ask for," he added.