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Palmeiras coach Gilson Kleina confirms approach for Riquelme

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Palmeiras coach Gilson Kleina has confirmed the Verdão have offered a contract to Argentine midfielder Juan Roman Riquelme and are waiting to hear back from the Boca Juniors star.

Riquelme, 34, has stated that he wants to leave Boca, where he has not played since July, as he no longer has anything to give the club.

But with the appointment of Carlos Bianchi, under whom Riquelme enjoyed the best spell of his career at Boca, as head coach this week, it could be that the former Barcelona playmaker has a change of heart.

"He’s a big name, a reference," Kleina told Fox Sports.

"Who would not want to have a player of that quality? Palmeiras made a proposal, we will wait for his decision. The only situation that we need to see are his conditions.

"Long time not playing. The coach who came to Boca, Bianchi, loves Riquelme and has affinity. I see with good eyes what is happening."

After Palmeiras were relegated from Serie A last season Kleina has looked to overhaul the squad but it is proving difficult to attract the players they want.

"Some names that were in the crosshairs of Palmeiras have already signed elsewhere. The president has to take that ride for Palmeiras, reorganise.

"It is difficult to nail some situations if the timing is political, we know how it works."

And as well as bringing in new players, Kleina is hoping they can retain the captain Marcos Assunção.

"Assunção is a reference for Palmeiras, I hope they can hit a deal, he was a key player, our captain."

 

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