Allardyce told the club’s official website: “We looked at Santos in the summer and felt at the time it wasn’t right to sign him for a number of reasons.
“Mainly, because we felt that Ricardo Gardner would have been back in action sooner rather than later.
“I looked at him during the World Cup and I was quite impressed with him. He is a left-sided player with some real qualities.
“If he becomes available in January we could make a move for him.”