After a hot start to the Premier League season, Brazilian forward Richarlison has gone cold since before Christmas. However, all that has done is stoke the ardor of some teams pursuing the Watford player, with Manchester United, Chelsea and Everton all mentioned in a report on Sky Sports.
The soon-to-be-21 Brazilian has managed five goals and five assists this season, all before December, with his current slump resulting in his being benched by new manager Javi Gracia. Richarlison was a constant fixture in the side under former manager Marco Silva but has seen his role diminished under the Spaniard in charge now.
That hasn’t diminished interest in the player though. Chelsea were close to signing him in the summer before Watford swooped in for the former Fluminense player who was considered a steal for £11.2m. The report goes on to add that his current failures could be attributed to the relentless schedule he has played at with the Brazilian League running on a May-December schedule. He was transferred to Vicarage Road in August and basically did not have the benefit of a summer off like other players have.
Richarlison, Watford 17-18.— Ted Knutson (@mixedknuts) October 17, 2017
Very impressive PL start for the young Brazilian. pic.twitter.com/kEr6dDCkw5
Richarlison is a right-footed player who has predominantly spent most of this season in England out on the left wing, where he can cut in on his stronger foot to wreak havoc on defences. While Theo Walcott looks untouchable on the Everton right wing, Yannick Bolasie’s hold on a starting spot might be more tenuous.
Watford are reportedly looking for nearly £40m for their Brazilian though, and that could be a stumbling block for the Blues. United, with Anthony Martial rumoured to be on his way out, could make a move to replace him with Richarlison. Chelsea meanwhile are looking likely to sack their manager Antonio Conte and they could be set for a summer of spending for whoever comes in to replace him.
The Hornets loudly complained about Everton’s supposed tampering with manager Marco Silva, blaming that contact for their season going down the tubes before sacking him. Watford had already driven the price up for Silva’s release before that, and should the Blues inquire about the forward we can expect a similarly frosty reception.