Wenger and Dein may build pipeline from Brazil



By Myles Palmer

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ATLETICO MINEIRO, Gilberto Silva’s former club, want a partnership with Arsenal, says ANR’s Rio contact Alexandre Gontijo.

Arsene Wenger flew to Brazil after his Confederations Cup commentating stint on German television and a High Court appearance in London.

As you will recall, Atletico Mineiro president Alexandre Kall corroborated Arsenal’s evidence in a recent court case involving Brussels-based agents Jacques Lichtenstein and Ronnie Rosenthal, who claimed they were owed £440,00 from the Gilberto deal.

WENGER was very complimentary about Atletico’s training ground. Inevitably, local reporters asked if he came to see one player.

He said,” We didn´t travel to see any single player, Brazil has a great tradition of producing players, but we are here to visit Atletico and see the players in action in training and playing.

“The academy of Atletico is first class and provides great working conditions for their staff. Facilities like this put Atletico near the top in the world football.

“The academy here is good as Arsenal’s one, maybe better, The difference is the weather. England has clouds and rain all the time.”

DAVID DEIN said, “It’s interesting for Arsenal to have closer relationships with Brazilian clubs”.

Dein said Arsenal were pleased with the qualities of Silivinho, who was signed in 1998 from Corinthians, and Gilberto, who joined in 2002.

Last Sunday the Arsenal duo watched Atletico beat Flamengo 3-1 in Belo Horizonte.

JULIO BAPTISTA came up through the São Paulo academy system.

In a typical tale, his mother made a lot of sacrifices to put him through that soccer school.

Baptista is overdue a holiday after playing from July 2004 to June 2005 in Spain, then in Germany.

But he is apparently ready to join Arsenal’s pre-season training as soon as a deal can be made with Seville.

July 5th 2005