January 3, 2013: Alexandre Pato joins Corinthians from AC Milan for £12.2million
The former teenage prodigy ended his injury-plagued stay with AC Milan and returned home to Brazil on a four-year contract with Corinthians.
in an open letter on his departure, the Brazil forward thanked the Rossoneri for some unforgettable years in Milan but he also stated his desire to have regular playing time had seen him make the decision to leave the San Siro.
Pato had joined Milan at the age of 17 in August 2007, but an impressive start was followed by an underwhelming spell which produced only four goals and seven appearances in 2012-2013.
He wrote: “I am going to Brazil, to Corinthians, so I'll have the opportunity to play consistently. It will not, however, be easy to forget Milan.”
He arrived at Corinthians as a popular superstar, but never settled at the Parque Sao Jorge. Criticised by the media for his lack of commitment to the cause and a scuffed Panenka penalty attempt that caused Corinthians to be knocked-out of the 2013 Brazilian Cup quarter-final, did not help his cause.
However, after being loaned out to arch rivals Sao Paulo, the striker was reborn in 2015 and had his named linked back with a Brazil call-up.
Pato scored 24 goals in 76 games and also added 14 assists as he showed glimpses of the talent witnessed when he first burst onto the scene.
This earned the Brazilian an eagerly-anticipated brief loan spell in the Premier League with Chelsea in January 2016.
Alexandre Pato’s contract expired with Corinthians in the summer of 2016 and the 27-year-old is currently plying his trade with Villareal CF in La Liga.