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ESPN FC  By ESPN

Vinicius Jr. unlikely to return to Flamengo in January despite rumours - agent

After Gareth Bale and Karim Benzema continued their goal-scoring ways in Real Madrid's La Liga win over Leganes, boss Julen Lopetegui sought to downplay individual achievements.
Real Madrid's Julen Lopetegui refuses to commit to a No. 1 goalkeeper after Thibaut Courtois has yet to start.

Real Madrid's Brazilian teenager Vinicius Jr. is unlikely to return to Brazil in January, his agent said, despite swirling rumours in Spain that the 18-year-old might not get a first-team opportunity under new coach Julen Lopetegui.

Vinicius Jr. arrived in Madrid on a €45 million transfer from Flamengo during the summer and was sent to the reserves to get used to his new surroundings under coach Santiago Solari.

Marca reported on Thursday, citing unnamed sources, that there is a pact between the two parties for the Brazilian starlet to return to Flamengo in January before coming back in the summer in case things were not working as expected during the first half of the season.

"There is no option like that in his contract," Pena told Globoesporte. "We are following the plan exactly to the letter. Because of this, a return to Flamengo in January is improbable."

According to Marca, Real Madrid left Flamengo with an option to take the player back in January in the event he was not adapting well to the Spanish league. Said option would allow Vinicius Jr. to play for Flamengo in the state league finals and then return Madrid in July for good.

The youngster was both top scorer and player of the tournament as Brazil won the 2017 South American Under-17 Championship in March of that year, but had yet to make his senior club debut there. He made the move to Madrid when the club was still under the direction of Zinedine Zidane.

Held without a goal in his debut for the reserve side two weekends ago, a 2-0 win against Las Palmas, Vinicius Jr. started and played the full 90 minutes this past Sunday, although he was bitten by Atletico Madrid B's captain Tachi after scoring twice in the reserve-team derby match, which finished 2-2. 

Tachi escaped a red card and was only given a booking for the incident while Vinicius Jr. also picked up a yellow card for dissent.

Vinicius Jr. saw action in Thursday's scrimmage between Real Madrid and Castilla. 

On Thursday, Lopetegui skirted questions about Vinicius Jr.'s future with the club.

"He has great talent. He is going to be a really great player," Lopetegui said. "He is adapting in the best way possible. He is capable of first team and we will continue to evaluate. I am not going to get ahead of myself as to what our plans might be."

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