Sky Sports is reporting that Marcelo Mattos says he is unaware of reported interest in him from Portsmouth Football Club and two other Premier League clubs.
Marcelo Mattos – 24 year-old Brazilian midfielder
But the 24-year-old’s agent Pini Zahavi has now confirmed the Fratton Park interest – and that there are two other Premier League clubs interested in the player.
Middlesbrough, Newcastle and Wigan are understood to be keeping close tabs on the player, and we expect the other two clubs are any two out of these three.
Apparently all 3 Premier clubs have already bid for the player, who will become a European citizen at the end of this month, when he collects his Italian passport.
Mattos looked good last season at Panathinaikos, according to the Brazilian midfielderâ€™s agent. (surprise, surprise).
Pini Zahavi told Greek newspaper Goal:
“At this moment we are considering offers from English clubs, one is from Portsmouth and there are two more.”
“But it is possible for Mattos to stay at Panathinaikos, the player is very happy with the working conditions there and he loves the fans.”
“He is also very satisfied with the attitude of the people at the club, we will have to wait a few weeks as the transfer market does not officially open until July.”
We have had dealings before with football agent Zahavi, and of course all agents try to drum up interest in their players, so it’s hard to believe everything they say.
Portsmouth manager Harry Redknapp went after the 24-year-old last month when he learned there is a release clause in Mattosâ€™ contract of Â£5.9M.
This means the Greek club must agree to any offer the receive for the player, that is equal to or greater than that.
Mattos says he knows absolutely nothing of Portsmouth’s interest as he told Greece’s SportDay:
“I don’t know anything about Portsmouth,”
“At this moment I play for Panathinaikos and that is the only club on my mind.”
“About the Premier League, I can say that it is the best championship in the world and every player wishes to play there some day.”
“All the best players in the world play there.”
Mattos played for Corinthians in Brazil from 2004 until last year, when he signed for Panathinaikos. He played 134 times for the Brazilian club and scored 17 goals.
He has so far played 32 times for the Greek club scoring 3 goals, but the 6ft tall midfielder has never been capped by Brazil.
While at Corinthians, Marcelo established himself in the team and excelled alongside Carlos Tevez and Javier Mascherano, and they were dubbed the team of the year after the trio won the Championship.
Of course since then Tevez has moved to Manchester United and Mascherano to Liverpool, and both have played extremely well in the Premiership, after initially joining West Ham United a couple of years ago.
It may well be speculation that Newcastle are interested in this defensive midfield player, but we’ll keep reporting on these possibilities, and some of these may actually have solid bids behind them.
We are bound to be falsely linked with many players this summer (what’s new?), but as we report these stories we’ll try to say how truthful they look to be – well as best as we can.
At least we’ll know a lot more about all the players we are linked with during the summer, if nothing else.