Alexandre Pato: Chelsea sign Brazilian striker on loan till end of season
Chelsea has confirmed a deal to bring Brazil striker Alexandre Pato on loan until the end of the current season. Pato arrives from Corinthians, the defending champions of the Brasileiro Serie A.
The club released a statement on their official website.
“I am so happy to sign for Chelsea. It is a dream for me. I am looking forward to meeting and getting to know my new team-mates and cannot wait to play.
“I thank Chelsea for their support and hope I can repay this faith to the club and its fans.” – Alexandre Pato
The striker represents a huge gamble for Chelsea, having failed to make it to the Brazil national team since 2013. However, the Blues are increasingly desperate, as the loan signing of Radamel Falcao has been an unmitigated disaster while Loic Remy is on his way out of the club, having failed to impress even when afforded the opportunity and close to joining Leicester City.
But Chelsea boss Guus Hiddink does not think there is any risk in bringing Pato to the club.
“It's not a gamble,” Hiddink said. “Coming on loan makes it possible to view if he can adapt to the league.”
Pato did not impress on return to Brazil
Pato’s parent club Corinthians have repeatedly stated that they want to dispense with the striker’s services as he is viewed as a strain on the club’s finances. The 26-year-old was on loan to fellow Brazilian club Sao Paulo this season where he had a mediocre scoring record with 10 goals in 33 appearances in the league.
The former AC Milan striker’s return to Europe comes after a disappointing spell in his native land. The forward was once considered Brazil’s most promising youngster but, unlike his compatriot Neymar, has failed to live up to expectations. Pato was greeted with much fanfare when Corinthians signed him but now leaves Brazil with his tail between his legs.
Pato’s first spell in Europe with Italian giants AC Milan began promisingly, but a spate of injuries and off-field problems meant the striker left for Brazil having scored only 16 Serie A goals in 43 appearances.
The forward’s agents have been hawking the striker around Europe, with rumours of a move to the Chinese Premier League being rejected by Pato. However, the forward revealed that he had turned down an offer from Manchester United.
While speaking to Brazilian outlet SporTV, saying: “Two hours before [the window closed] I had a very good offer from Manchester United,” although Pato failed to provide further details, thus leading into question the veracity of his comments.
Brazilian Formula 1 driver Felipe Massa inadvertently revealed the news a few days ago when he congratulated Alexander Pato on Twitter, as the pair share a close relationship.