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Atlético nearing transfer for Marcos Paulo

It’s expected that the Brazilian attacker’s deal to 2026 will be made official soon.

2020 Brasileirao Series A: Fluminense v Vasco Play Behind Closed Doors Amidst the Coronavirus (COVID - 19) Pandemic Photo by Buda Mendes/Getty Images

Atlético Madrid are on the brink of making their first summer signing, and it might be Brazilian teenager Marcos Paulo.

The 20-year-old is on his way to Madrid and will be ready to undergo a medical with the club upon his arrival, according to La Sexta reporter Belén Sánchez García. If true, he will be Atlético’s first signing in this window, but Udinese’s Rodrigo De Paul is expected to follow soon.

However, Matteo Moretto reports that Paulo is jetting off for an unrelated vacation and won’t officially sign for the Spanish champions until July.

Paulo signed a pre-contract agreement with Diego Simeone’s side back in January, which Fluminense president Mario Bittencourt confirmed in an interview around that time. Bittencourt said Paulo was free to negotiate with Atlético, but said that Fluminense were trying to get compensation for losing the young star.

Paulo scored three times in 24 league games last season, notching a further three assists in 1,211 Série A minutes. Inter Milan were also interested in his signing, but Atlético won him over, and now what remains to be seen is where the club sees fit to play him in 2021/22.

Vitolo is likely to leave this summer, having said he wants to get back on the field and feel important. Atlético will also continue to look for competition at the number nine position for Luis Suárez, though Paulo might not be ready to compete at that level.

A loan move within Spain or a stint with Atlético’s under-19s seems more likely, at least to start.