Alexandre Pato arrives in London, set to seal Chelsea loan on Thursday
Alexandre Pato will complete his loan move to Chelsea on Thursday as Corinthians attempt to tie the striker down to a new contract, the Brazilian giants' sporting director has confirmed.
Sources told ESPN FC on Tuesday that Pato is to undergo a medical and finalise the terms of a six-month loan move to Stamford Bridge, after Corinthians gave up on the possibility of a permanent sale in January.
At a news conference to unveil Corinthians signing Guilherme, sporting director Eduardo Ferreira confirmed that Pato will be unveiled as a Chelsea player as soon as talks between the player's agent and Corinthians president Roberto de Andrade reach completion.
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"We are nearing a deal for Pato and I can't guarantee the time of the loan and the value," Ferreira said. "Based on my conversation with Roberto [de Andrade, Corinthians president], this will be resolved on Thursday.
"Alexandre Pato is on his way to a resolution of his situation and that will be with Chelsea. Roberto de Andrade is working out a few things with Gilmar Veloz [Pato's agent]. Between tomorrow [Wednesday] and Thursday all the details will be finalised. We hope to have all the details and something 100 percent formalised."
Pato's contract with Corinthians expires in December 2016, meaning that he will be able to negotiate a pre-contract agreement with interested clubs when his Chelsea loan ends in the summer.
Ferreira, however, says Corinthians are in talks with Pato's representatives over an extension to avoid the possibility of losing the 26-year-old for nothing.
"We are trying to tie up the contract in the best way possible so that Corinthians does not lose financially," he added. "Now, because of the legalities, we are discussing the details with Roberto and Gilmar Veloz. But we no longer are in talks with Pato."
Speaking to Sky Sports News at Heathrow Airport shortly after arriving on Wednesday afternoon, Pato said that he cannot wait to join up with his new teammates.
Asked how he felt at the prospect of joining Chelsea, Pato replied: "So happy. I come here for my dream. Chelsea is my new home. Thanks to the Chelsea supporters, thanks to my fans on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook.
"I need to play, I need to... I don't know what to say because I'm so happy. I'm very anxious. I want to [get to] know my new friends, my new team. I really want to play at Chelsea."
Pato's arrival represents interim manager Guus Hiddink's first signing of the January transfer window, and the Dutchman has moved to bolster Chelsea's attacking options with Radamel Falcao a long-term absentee due to a "very serious" thigh injury and Newcastle United interested in taking unsettled striker Loic Remy on loan before Monday's deadline.
Liam is ESPN FC's Chelsea correspondent. Follow him on Twitter: @Liam_Twomey.