Newcastle are confident of completing a transfer for midfielder Bruno Guimaraes, according to talkSPORT, although Lyon insist the deal is yet to be done.
The Brazilian is the target of a £33.5m bid from the Magpies as they look to beat a host of other clubs, including Arsenal, to his signature.
If completed, the 24-year-old will realize his dream of playing in the Premier League without hesitating his ambition to move to England.
He previously told Fox Sports: “I always told my agents that it was my dream to play in England, it’s the best league in the world, every game is close.
“Even when the team first plays against the team last, it feels like a final.”
Guimaraes has quickly established himself as one of Brazil’s brightest talents since being released by Flamengo at the age of 12.
The midfielder was then signed by Athletico Paranaense in 2017 after a three-year stint with Brazilian Serie D side Audax.
Arsenal and Chelsea quickly inquired but it was Lyon who won the race to sign him in January 2020 following the intervention of the club’s sporting director and ex-Brazilian international Juninho Pernambucano.
And Athletico Paranaense sporting director Paulo Andre was keen to hail his club’s valuable asset as he transitioned into European football.
On Guimaraes, he told L’Equipe: “He is creative, courageous and versatile. Believe me, this kid is worth his weight in gold.
Guimaraes was immediately introduced to competition at the highest level as he made his European bow less than a month after joining Lyon.
His new side shocked then-Italian champions Juventus in their Champions League round of 16 tie against Cristiano Ronaldo.
Guimaraes told UOL after Lyon’s 1-0 first leg win that Manchester United star Ronaldo was “a guy (he) used to play video games with”.
He added: “I was going to ask him to swap shirts with him, but he was a little angry. He’s a guy who doesn’t like to lose.
“That’s what we have to take as an example; a guy who has won everything but hates losing.
Lyon finally got the better of Ronaldo and co to win on away goals after the scores were blocked 2-2 on aggregate to set up a clash with Man City.
And that’s where Guimaraes met Ilkay Gundogan who was cited by the man himself as a player who influenced his development.
He previously told the Ligue 1 website: “I’m a fan of players like Ronaldinho Gaúcho and Zinédine Zidane, I liked watching them play.
“Right now I love Ilkay Gündogan at Manchester City, but ever since I was little I’ve been inspired by Andrés Iniesta.”
Lyon beat the odds again as they eliminated Pep Guardiola’s City 3-1 in the quarter-finals before losing to eventual Champions League winners Bayern Munich in the last four.
Guimaraes found success the following summer playing a key role in leading Brazil to Olympic glory in Tokyo in August.
The midfielder with a hard tackle and on the lookout for the pass (three assists in 20 Ligue 1 games) has only further reinforced his notoriety this season.
Lyon sporting director Juninho said: “I was an expert in Brazil when I first saw him and I was impressed by his qualities.
“He’s a complete midfielder. He sees things before others. He takes risks.
Swapping Europa League football to help Newcastle avoid relegation would certainly be another risk, but Guimaraes will relish the challenge.