For the past few weeks, Newcastle United’s desire to sign Santos star Marcos Leonardo has been discussed in the Brazilian media.

On November 9th, Globo Esporte stated the striker’s agent had contact with Real Madrid, days after holding talks with the Magpies. Four days ago, Bolavip Brasil said Newcastle are favourites in the transfer race and are ready to make an offer in January.

Apart from Newcastle and the La Liga side, AS Roma are also credited with interest in the 20-year-old.

They had looked at him in the summer and state the Serie A side may have to give up on signing the Brazilian, due to competition from Newcastle and Los Blancos.

Leonardo’s agent Rafaela Pimenta has opened the door for him to make a switch to Europe. Speaking in words relayed by, the representative stated a deal could take place in the January window.

“Already in the previous transfer market he had the possibility of being sold, but Santos’ sporting situation was very particular. He agreed to stay because he wanted to help out until the end of the championship,” she said.

“He didn’t want to leave because it wasn’t the right thing to do. But the time has come to move. He wants to have a European experience and his time will come this winter.”

Pimenta’s comments would please Newcastle in their pursuit of Leonardo, who has scored 21 goals and registered four assists from 45 games this year.