It’s looking likely that Alexandre Pato’s spell at Chelsea will be capped at two Premier League appearances and one goal.
The Brazilian, who arrived on loan from Corinthians in January, is yet to hear from Chelsea regarding a permanent deal, his agent recently revealed.
And so what once appeared to be an unlikely shot at revitalising a stalling career has turned into a worthless deal for both parties.
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Chelsea will welcome Antonio Conte after the European Championship and you have to think that a contract would have been offered by now if the Italian wanted to keep Pato around.
The former AC Milan striker was signed by Guus Hiddink as cover for the injured Radamel Falcao and Loic Remy, and has admitted that he expected to play more than the 131 minutes he received in two games against Aston Villa and Swansea.
Pato told SporTV, per FourFourTwo: “I was in [Hiddink’s] office. I asked to talk, I explained my situation. He was very sincere: 'Pato, you came at a time when our players were injured. Now they're coming back, and I'm very loyal to my players'.
“I understand the coach's decision. I arrived at a time when the group was closed, battling for a place in the Champions league, in decisive games... I was hoping to play more, but I understand the coach's decision.
“I do not regret [moving to Stamford Bridge]. Chelsea received me very well. I could play, scored a goal, I showed that I can play in Europe, in England. Because many say that England is very difficult. [But] I was hoping to play more.”
Pato wants to stay in Europe
Pato had to wait 64 days to make his Chelsea debut, with Hiddink claiming he was still in pre-season shape upon his arrival. But even when the forward returned to full fitness he was behind Diego Costa and Bertrand Traore in the pecking order.
The player, who once had the world at his feet, is aware that he will likely have to find a new club in the summer if Corinthians deem him a surplus to requirements.
“I want to stay in Europe. My head is pointing toward Europe now - I want to play there. But if not, I'll come back here [to Corinthians]," he added.
“I told my agent that at the moment I do not want to listen to anyone in Brazil. Since I cannot say yes or no at this point, I do not want to make anyone hopeful or angry. Let's see through July 1 and if nothing happens in Europe we sit and listen to these clubs.”