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'Gerson will join Barcelona,' says father

The father of Fluminense starlet Gerson has claimed that the midfielder will join Barcelona in the January transfer window.

Barca have first option on the 18-year-old but Juventus, Atletico Madrid and Manchester City have nonetheless been tracking the Brazil Under-20 international.

However, the player's father has now ended all speculation about his son's future by insisting that he will move to Camp Nou once the Catalans' transfer ban is lifted.

"Gerson will be staying with Fluminense for now and then join Barcelona in January," his father told Mundo Deportivo.

"We appreciate the interest of other teams, because it is a sign that Gerson is doing well, but we have taken our decision.

"He wants to play for Barcelona. That has always been his dream.

"Barcelona are the perfect club for him to grow. Gerson is ready to challenge for a first-team spot, but he is in no rush.

"He still has plenty of room for improvement. He will be one of the best players in the world in two years' time."

Gerson has been likened to Juventus star Paul Pogba due to his style of play, but he aims to model his game on Andres Iniesta.

"Everybody says that he has the same characteristics as Pogba, but I don't think he is as strong as the Frenchman," he added.

"But he has great positional sense and his technique is a bit like Iniesta, who is his idol."