Brazilian forward Rodrygo Goes has told reporters he could remain at Santos until the end of 2019 rather than join Real Madrid this summer.
The 18-year-old has starred with Santos in his native Brazil but is due to join Madrid this year after the two club’s struck a €45m deal in 2018.
Rodrygo has made 61 first-team appearances for Santos despite his youth and starred in the South American Under-20 Championship last month.
His latest comments are carried by ESPN’s Brazilian team and are the latest indication that his move to the Spanish capital will be delayed.
Santos president Jose Carlos Peres told reporters last month, as cited by Diario AS: “We have asked Madrid about this (to delay the move) and now we wait to hear back from them.
“This is still early on but we want to plan ahead.”