Report: Chelsea favourites to secure deal for Corinthians forward MalcolmChelsea's John Terry celebrates scoring their first goal in front of the West Ham United fans at Stamford Bridge on 26th December, 2014
Chelsea are favourites to secure a deal for Corinthians forward Malcolm, according to reports.
Website Express claims that the Blues have moved ahead of Arsenal, Barcelona and Manchester United in the race to sign the 17 year-old, after it allegedly become apparent that his preference is for a move to the Fulham-based club, if he should come to England.
Malcolm is believed to be valued at around €25.5 million and is contracted to Corinthians until May 2016.
The São Paulo native came to prominence during the 2014 Brasileirão, with a return of two goals in 20 appearances.
Former Corinthians Head Coach Mano Menezes usually used him as the right-sided attacking midfielder in a 4-2-3-1, but he has operated as a centre forward and in both the centre and on the left.
Malcolm has unsurprisingly been dubbed the “new Neymar” and would swell Chelsea’s Brazilian-born contingent to seven [including Wallace and Lucas Piazon, who are on loan at Vitesse Arnhem and Eintracht Frankfurt respectively].
The fact he turns 18 in February is another positive for Chelsea - Brazilian players under the age of 18 are largely prohibited from moving abroad - though whether he would qualify for a work permit at this stage is unclear.