Who is Barcelona and Man Utd transfer target Gabriel Veron?

Stefan Bienkowski
Stefan Bienkowski
  • Updated: 19 May 2021 15:43 BST
  • 2 min read
Who is Barcelona and Man Utd transfer target Gabriel Veron?

Manchester United are apparently looking to beat Manchester City, Barcelona and Juventus to the signing of Palmeiras striker Gabriel Veron

According to Spanish newspaper Sport, the 18-year-old talent has drawn attention from some of Europe’s biggest clubs despite only just beginning his career in his native Brazil. 

To date, Veron has only made 25 senior appearances for his club in the Campeonato Brasileiro Serie A, scoring five goals along the way. 

So why do Man Utd reportedly lead a merry band of super clubs in trying to sign his largely unknown and unproven striker?

How Veron arrived on the scene

While the young striker has only just begun his career in Palmeiras’ first team, Veron has already made a name for himself from what he did in the club’s youth side. 

Despite only joining in 2017, Veron was already the youth side’s top goalscorer within a year and helped win them the Under-17 Club World Cup in 2018 – beating Real Madrid in the final. 

The following year saw Veron win a call up to the Brazil squad for the 2019 FIFA Under-17 World Cup, where the young striker scored three goals and eventually won the Golden Ball award. 

However, it’s perhaps Veron’s ability to then step up to the Palmeiras first team that has interested the Premier League and Europe’s biggest clubs the most. 

After making his debut in November 2019, Veron became the second-youngest player to score for the club and the youngest player to ever score in a Libertadores match. 

As such, the comparisons to young Brazilian strikers that have quickly made their mark in the nation’s domestic leagues before quickly taking Europe by storm are seemingly inevitable. And perhaps why clubs like Man Utd and Barcelona are so eagerly attempting to snap him up as quickly as possible. 

“He has a great relationship with the ball, but that’s only part of it,” Palmeiras Under-17 coach Artur Itiro told The Athletic in 2019. “He is also able to keep control at high speed. You don’t see many players who are able to marry those two characteristics, even at senior level.

“There are plenty of quick, explosive wide players, but Gabriel also has great balance and a vast repertoire of tricks. He can flick the ball over a defender’s head, do eye-catching things like that.

“He is a player who unbalances opponents, and he can do it on both wings. On the left, he cuts in and drives towards the box; on the right he likes to reach the byline.

“And we have even been using him as a No 10 recently, trying to make the most of his dribbling skills in the tight spaces around the penalty area. That shows that his game is not just about speed.”