While Paulinho himself has been vocal in his desire to stay put in Brazil as recently as this week, that has not stopped continued reports of Premier League interest.
Chelsea already have four Brazilian’s in their side – David Luiz, Oscar, Lucas Paizon and Ramires – and appear keen on adding to that number by targeting Paulinho in January.
Former Chelsea manager Roberto di Matteo appeared to have singled out the 23-year-old as his main target in January, and according to reports that remains the case under new boss Rafa Benitez.
Now according to the Mirror Chelsea may face competition from Manchester City after boss Roberto Mancini reportedly identified Paulinho as the man to help his side’s ailing title defence.
The Citizens sit six points adrift of rivals Manchester United after their 3-2 defeat against Sir Alex Ferguson’s side on Sunday.
Manchester City are seemingly in need of some fresh legs in midfield following the sale of Nigel de Jong and Javi Garcia’s failure to settle into life at the Etihad Stadium, and Paulinho more than fits the bill.
Whtether Mancini will be able to persuade Manchester City’s owners to spash the £12 million required to land Paulinho remains to be seen however.
After a difficult summer in the transfer market the Italian has reportedly been told that he must sell players before he can bring in any new faces.
The Corinthians forward could have the chance to come face to face with one of his potential suitors, Chelsea, in the Club World Cup should both teams make it to the final later this month.