Chelsea manager Hiddink says Pato 'brave' returning to Europe

BY foxsports • January 29, 2016

Chelsea interim boss Guus Hiddink has denied the imminent arrival of Alexandre Pato is a gamble.

The 26-year-old former AC Milan forward is poised to sign on loan from Brazilian club Corinthians until the end of the season.

"It's not a gamble," Hiddink said.

"Coming on loan makes it possible to have a good view at him, whether he is able to adapt to the high demands of the club and the league.

"He is in London. He is now in the process of bureaucratic paperwork."

Pato has been hampered by injuries in recent seasons and it is uncertain when he will first be available to Hiddink and Chelsea.

The Dutchman described the move as "a brave step" and the success or failure depends on the player.

He added: "It's up to him."

New York Red Bulls defender Matt Miazga's move is near completion, too.

"We're not rushing, but he will be one of the squad members for the future," Hiddink added.

Hiddink was asked about the contribution of Diego Costa, who has six goals in six games after a prior fallow spell under Jose Mourinho, including last Sunday's decisive strike in the Premier League win at Arsenal.

"I'm very pleased with him," said Hiddink, who was speaking ahead of Sunday's FA Cup fourth-round tie at MK Dons.

"I'm pleased with his efficiency. We're depending a lot on him, too much sometimes.

"He's of huge importance for us."

Yet Chelsea could be increasingly reliant on the Brazil-born Spain striker as Loic Remy could be allowed to leave before Monday's transfer deadline, while Radamel Falcao (thigh) remains injured.

On Remy, who has a calf problem, Hiddink said: "I don't think being injured now has any influence on (him) staying or going.

"It's a minor injury, so we will see what will happen in the upcoming hours."

Ramires this week left for Chinese Super League side Jiangsu Suning for a fee reported to be in excess of £20million as Chelsea make changes to the squad ahead of Monday's deadline.

There was speculation of England vice-captain Gary Cahill being unsettled due to being displaced in the first XI by Kurt Zouma.

Hiddink has spoken to the defender and expects Cahill, who earlier this season signed a new four-year contract, to stay.

"There was no hint from his side 'can I leave the club?' Nothing," Hiddink added.

"First he's very happy. He's of value and, as far as I'm concerned, I will have him in the upcoming months and I think the club will have him in the upcoming years."

Chelsea declined to address the prospect of FIFA scrutinising their recruitment of young players, referring to the club's prior statement on the topic.

The Press Association this week revealed Burkina Faso international Bertrand Traore played for their under-18s side when aged 16, in an apparent breach of FIFA regulations.

The Premier League champions could even face the prospect of being placed under a transfer embargo if found guilty of wrongdoing.

FIFA rules prohibit the international transfer of a minor (an under-18) and the Blues believe Traore was the subject of an option agreement which allowed him to play in friendly games.

Hiddink, who confirmed Traore would be in the squad on Sunday, is preoccupied by on-field matters and admits his caretaker status means he has little input on transfer strategy.

"I'm not (thinking) much into next season, who they must hire or buy or sell," Hiddink said.

The Dutchman won the 2009 FA Cup during his first caretaker spell in charge and plans to take the competition seriously despite Premier League matches against Watford and Manchester United following in quick succession.

Eden Hazard is likely to start for the first time in four weeks following a groin problem as the Blues bid to progress beyond the fourth round, something which was beyond them last season.

League One Bradford last term came from two goals down to win 4-2 at Stamford Bridge in arguably the biggest cup upset in recent history.

"We're not here to pass the time," Hiddink added.

"Chelsea must always go for a title. The FA Cup is a target."



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