​Barcelona have won the race to sign Brazilian prospect Gustavo Maia from Sao Paulo, acting swiftly to beat a handful of Premier League and La Liga admirers to his signature.


The 19-year-old is yet to make a first team appearance for the Brazilian outfit, but has caught the attention of a host of scouts in the Copa Sao Paulo de Juniores.


Maia was called up to the senior side at the turn of the year, but the coronavirus outbreak has prevented him from making his first team debut.

According to a report in Spanish news outlet ​SPORT, Barcelona have already paid an initial fee of just under £1m to secure majority ownership of the youngster, with over £3m in add ons to be paid to confirm the deal. Sao Paulo will retain a 30% stake in the player.


The remaining add ons will be paid on 30 June to finalise the deal, with Barcelona owning 70% of his economic rights.


Speaking about the deal, Sao Paulo's director of football Alexandre Passaro told ​ESPN Brazil (via ​Diario AS): ''We have a purchase option if Barcelona want to buy him during this season.

''His total release clause is 4.5million euros with a further 3.5m euros to pay.


''The deal is structured in this way to prevent losing players in the middle of a domestic season.''


Maia is deployed predominantly as a forward, but can operate out wide or as a target man. He has been on the radar of scouts in Spain for two years, while a number of ​Premier League clubs were also keeping tabs on him.

He joined Sao Paulo's famous Cotia academy - which has seen Kaka, Casemiro, and Lucas Moura pass through its doors - aged 13, with his performances in the Copinha youth club tournament triggering a call up to the senior side this year.


Maia has represented Brazil at Under-16 and Under-17 level.


The signing demonstrates ​Barcelona's continued commitment to invest in young South American talent, with Maia teaming up with Matheus Fernandes & Matheus Pereira at Camp Nou, who both joined at the start of the year.