Chelsea’s new 18m signing Andrey Santos has been denied a Premier League work permit, and will not be allowed to play for the club for now.
According to Mail Online, Santos missed out by just one point, because of the other midfielders that the Blues have brought, including additions snapped up later in the January transfer window.
Santos, 18, was signed towards the start of 2023, as one of eight signings for the west London club this winter.
The Brazilian midfielder could return to his native country on loan, after a successful spell during the South American U-20 championship.
Santos was a key part of Brazil’s success at the regional tournament, scoring a header in the final earlier this week.
Chelsea reportedly applied for an exceptional talent visa to allow Santos to play in the Premier League, though by a narrow decision, it was not successful.
Speaking in Chelsea’s pre-match press conference ahead of their Premier League with Southampton on Saturday, Potter mentioned the Brazilian’s situation.
Potter said: ‘Santos is still in the same place. We?re looking at what the options are for him.’
Since he cannot join up with the Chelsea side for the time being, it looks likely that he will go to Brazil to play in the Copa Libertadores, with Palmeiras thought to be in pole position.
Playing in South America’s leading club competition would add at least three points to the application to let Santos play in the Premier League, according to the Evening Standard.