Who is Manchester United-linked Gabriel Barbosa?

Picture Supplied by Action Images

Brazil striker Gabriel Barbosa has been linked with Leicester City, Chelsea and Arsenal, but Manchester United look set to capture his signature.

Picture Supplied by Action ImagesGabriel Barbosa is reported to be on the verge of a move to Old Trafford

The 19-year-old, dubbed the "new Neymar" in many quarters, has been lighting up the Olympics alongside the Barcelona striker.

Earlier in the transfer window, it looked as if Leicester would be Gabriel's destination, but Jose Mourinho is ready to swoop with a £30 million bid for the talented youngster, the Sun reports.

We thought we'd bring you all the facts you need to know about the teenager set to be the Premier League's newest young starlet. 

He's been with Santos for over a decade

Gabriel joined Santos at the age of 8, and has been with the club ever since.

He has humble origins, and the tattoo he has of his father carrying him on his shoulders because they couldn't afford the bus fare is testament to them. 

Some of Brazil's greatest strikers have donned the Santos jersey, including Robinho, Neymar and Pele.

He's planned to move to Europe for a while

In an interview with ESPN earlier in the year, Gabriel intonated that his plan was to shine at the Rio Olympics in order to secure a big-money move to a club in Europe.

Football - Men's First Round - Group A Denmark v BrazilGabriel in action for Brazil against Denmark at the Olympics

While it took Brazil a few games to get going, Gabriel scored two goals in the 4-0 win over Denmark, and the side have advanced to the Semi-Finals thanks to a 2-0 win over Columbia. 

For a long time it seemed inevitable that he would follow Neymar to Barcelona, but despite his having been linked with every big club in the world United have suddenly emerged as the most likely destination. 

Gabriel's plan would appear to be coming to fruition.

His nickname is 'Gabigol'

His full name is Gabriel Barbosa Almeida, but he's referred to variously as Gabigol - due to his tremendous feats of goalscoring in youth football - Gabriel, or just Gabi.

He really does score goals...

Gabriel made his debut for Santos on 26 May 2013 at the age of 16. He scored his first goal on 22 August 2013 against Gremio in a match where he was called up from the crowd, with no football boots on him, to replace an injured player in the warm-up. 

Boots were found and 15 minutes after being subbed on to the field, Gabigol did what he does best and found the back of the net. 

Picture Supplied by Action ImagesIn training alongside his idol

Despite often playing out wide, Gabriel can usually be found towards the top of Santos' goalscoring charts. He was the club's top scorer in 2014, with 21 goals in 56 matches, and has this year found the net 12 times in 27 matches. 

In his four appearances for the national side, he has netted two goals including on his debut in a friendly against Panama, and in the 7-1 victory over Haiti in the Copa America.

He has excellent technical skills

Gabriel is most renowned for his speed and technical ability on the ball, much like the man to whom he is so frequently compared.

He is a versatile forward, with the ability to play in a central role and on both wings. He also has an outstanding work ethic both on and off the field.

One area in which he may struggle is the Premier League's physicality, with Brazilian football not often posing problems for his 5ft 9 frame. He will need to learn quickly and use his speed to evade the clutches of top flight defenders.

Football - Men's First Round - Group A Brazil v South AfricaIn action against South Africa

He would symbolise yet another coup for United 

Having already snapped up Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Paul Pogba, despite being unable to offer Champions League football, announcing the signature of one of the world's hottest young properties would truly be a statement of intent.  

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