Lyon playmaker Bruno Guimaraes is close to becoming Newcastle’s third signing of the January transfer window after the Magpies agreed a fee with the Ligue 1 on Thursday night.
The highly-rated midfielder took a step closer to becoming the sixth Brazilian player to represent Newcastle after chief scout Steve Nickson travelled to meet the player in South America.
Newcastle World takes a look back at how previous Samba ‘stars’ have fared during their time at St James Park.
Mirandinha - 1987-1989, 54 appearances, 19 goals
It seems remarkable to think Newcastle United - following the sale of key players Chris Waddle and Peter Beardsley - became the first English club to sign a Brazilian international back in 1987.
With hopes largely piled upon the burgeoning talent of Paul Gascoigne, the Magpies handed over around £575,000 to Palmieras for Mirandinha.
The unpredictable striker had made his Brazil debut earlier that year and actually scored for his country in a 1-1 draw against England at Wembley three months before his move to Tyneside.
The move initially captured the imagination of United supporters and a colourful following made their way to Carrow Road as ‘Mira’ made his debut in a 1-1 draw against Norwich City.
Mirandinha struck his first goals for the club on his third appearance with a brace in a 2-2 draw against Manchester United at Old Trafford and a first St James Park strike arrived in late September to help Willie McFaul’s side to a 2-1 win against Southampton.
He would end his first season on Tyneside with a credible 13 goals in 32 games in all competitions - but the Brazilian would lose a key source of goals that summer as United sold Paul Gascoigne to Spurs for a British record fee of £2.2million.
The funds received were reinvested in the likes of Wimbledon duo Andy Thorn and Dave Beasant and Bradford City forward John Hendrie - but the Magpies struggled and Mirandinha’s performances became an increasing source of frustration.
There were high points with a late penalty to give United an unexpected 2-1 win at Liverpool and two goals in a Tyne-Tees derby win against Middlesbrough.
Mirandinha made his final appearance for the club in a goalless home draw against Luton Town before returning to former club Palmeiras following the club’s relegation into Division Two (now The Championship).
There are some interesting tales from his time at Newcastle including being given some ‘different’ English lessons by Gazza and a goodbye message from then-United manager Jim Smith, who said: “As far as I’m concerned he can rot on his pig farm in Sao Paulo”.
Mirandinha was linked with a return to St James Park during Kevin Keegan’s first managerial spell - but his return was limited to personal visits and he reflected on his time on Tyneside in an interview with ESPN.
He said: "Unlike Brazil, where fans only came to see games if the team was doing well, in England they would come even when you were near the bottom of the table.
“I realised in England, the team gives people purpose -- and in Newcastle that bordered on religion.”
Fumaca - 1999-2000, 6 apps, 0 goals
Having worked with the likes of Ronaldo and Romario earlier in his trophy-laden managerial career, Sir Bobby Robson knew what it takes to work with Brazilian players.
Fumaca was Robson’s first signing after he was appointed as successor to Ruud Gullit - but was, with all due respect, rather less talented than his more illustrious countrymen.
Having spent time with the likes of Barnsley and Colchester United, Fumaca’s time with the latter brought him into contact with Mick Wadsworth and he followed the former Carlisle United manager to St James Park when he was named as Robson’s assistant manager.
Making his debut alongside Rob Lee in a 2-1 home win against Spurs in November 1999 that proved to be his only start for the club, Fumaca made five more substitute appearances for the Magpies.
A nomadic career followed with spells in Spain, Germany, the Czech Republic and back home in Brazil would follow.
Writing for The Guardian following Fumaca’s debut against Spurs, Michael Walker said: “Amazingly Ginola’s was not the most eyec-atching display at St James’ yesterday - that came from one of those foreigners he had complained about: Fumaca, a 23-year-old Brazilian.
“Given the nature of his efforts, Formica might be closer to the mark.
“Rejected by Walsall, Crystal Palace, Barnsley and Wolves among others, Fumaca has somehow convinced Bobby Robson he is worthy of a trial at Newcastle.
“Cue memories of Graeme Souness at Southampton, being conned by a man claiming to be George Weah’s cousin.”
Claudio Cacapa - 2007-2008, 29 apps, 2 goals
With rumours linking Newcastle with the likes of Barcelona’s Edmilson and Manchester United’s Gabriel Heinze, it was Lyon defender Claudio Cacapa that boosted Sam Allardyce’s squad ahead of the 2007/08.
After completing the signing of the five-time Ligue Un winner and watching him in a 2-0 reserve team win against Newcastle Blue Star, Allardyce said: “I bought him for the experience and the rock that he is at the back. His passing and control is an extra bonus.
“His defending (against Blue Star) was superb, and that’s what he’s for.
“He’s a destroyer - not a creator. Any defender who tells you he’s a creator isn’t telling you the truth.
“Defenders are only there to destroy the opposition’s attack.”
The early signs were promising as Cacapa helped United to a run of just one defeat in his first eight appearances and found the net for the first time with a header in a 3-1 home win against Spurs.
But his career on Tyneside looked all but over two weeks later when he put in an abysmal performance in a 4-1 home defeat against Portsmouth where the Magpies were three goals down in 11 minutes.
He was replaced just after the quarter-hour mark and never seemed to recover, despite going on to make a further 19 appearances under Allardyce and his successor Kevin Keegan.
Cacapa departed St James Park alongside the likes of Michael Owen and Peter Lovenkrands at the end of the 2008/09 season as United prepared for life after relegation from the Premier League.
Kenedy - January 2018 - May 2018 & 2018/19 season (both loans), 41 goals, 3 goals
Rafa Benitez had tried to sign Chelsea winger Kenedy on loan ahead of the 2017/18 season - but had to wait until the January transfer window to get his man.
The Spaniard’s persistence proved worthwhile as the talented wideman helped United embark on a run of just one defeat in nine games to end any thoughts of a return to the Championship.
The highlights of that initial loan spell were a brace in a 3-0 win over Southampton at St James Park and setting up Ayoze Perez for the only goal in a home win against Huddersfield Town.
His performances persuaded Benitez to push for a season-long loan deal during the following campaign and Kenedy duly returned to Tyneside.
Upon completion of the deal, Benitez told the club website: “I’m really pleased to have Kenedy back with us. I’m sure every fan will be happy with this signing.
“Hopefully he can keep playing at the same level that he reached with us last season. I wish him all the best for his time here.”
Despite Benitez’s enthusiasm, Kenedy failed to live up to his initial spell at Gallowgate and scored just one goal in 28 games during his first and only full season at the club.
His final appearance for the club coincided with Benitez’s final game as Magpies manager in a 4-0 win at Fulham.
Their departures were met with rather contrasting emotions.
Joelinton 2019 -present, 11 goals, 101 appearances
Little was known of the Hoffenheim forward when he became Newcastle’s record signing as Steve Bruce’s reign got underway in the summer of 2019.
The Magpies handed over £40million to the Bundesliga club for Joelinton and he was immediately handed the iconic number nine shirt.
There was early promise as he netted the only goal in a 1-0 win at Spurs on the second weekend of the season - but he would find the net just one more time during his first season in the Premier League.
More often that not, confusion over Joelinton’s best position in the side and difficulty in adapting to the Premier League led to frustration over his performances.
Six goals in 36 appearances in all competitions during his second season on Tyneside was a small improvement.
Then-Magpies manager Bruce reflected on Joelinton’s first two years at St James Park, telling BBC Newcastle: “I do believe he was thrust into a difficult situation.
“Of course, the huge price tag can weigh a lot of people down.
“I do believe he’s better playing to a side, rather than being an out-and-out centre-forward.
“I think he had his 25th birthday last week. I really – hand on heart, like you said – hope so because there’s nobody more desperate to do well than big Joe.”
To the surprise of many, new manager Eddie Howe has adapted Joelinton into a hardworking , box-to-box midfielder and his man of the match display in a 1-1 draw with Manchester United has brought cautious optimism the Brazilian can have a significant role to play as the club look to move away from the relegation zone.
In the aftermath of that game, Howe said: “I think against Man United the job we asked him to do defensively was very good and it was an outstanding performance based on a very high level of understanding, that’s so rare when you consider he has performed the majority of his career in a different position.
“But also his technical area too, the ability to receive the ball in tight areas and find his way out of really difficult situations.
“He’s been really good.
“He’s playing with real confidence, hopefully, that can continue and he can achieve even more.”