Leeds: £60k-a-week star could 'still move on' from Elland Road

Leeds United head coach Jesse Marsch on the touchline

Leeds United fans’ favourite Raphinha is likely to seal a move away from Elland Road despite playing a key role in maintaining their Premier League status, according to journalist Pete O’Rourke.

The Brazilian scored from the spot as the Whites overcame Brentford, allowing them to climb out of the relegation zone on the final day of the campaign.

What’s the latest news involving Raphinha?

Raphinha is about to enter the final two years of his £60,000-per-week contract, but Leeds are keen to tie him down to a fresh agreement.

It is understood that talks over a new deal were put on hold while the Yorkshire giants’ top flight status was in jeopardy.

While Raphinha has yet to sign on the dotted line, Barcelona have looked to capitalise and push through a switch to the Nou Camp.

West Ham United, Liverpool, Chelsea, Newcastle United and Paris Saint-Germain have also shown an interest in the winger, so the Catalan giants are not the only admirer.

Raphinha was the subject of a £50million bid from West Ham during the January transfer window, but Leeds rejected the proposal.

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What has Pete O’Rourke said about Raphinha?

O’Rourke believes Raphinha was desperate to keep Leeds in the Premier League and would have been overjoyed to have scored a vital goal on the final day of the season.

However, the journalist still feels there is a distinct possibility that the seven-cap Brazil international is set to leave Elland Road.

O’Rourke told GIVEMESPORT: “I’m sure Raphinha loved helping Leeds to stay up but he could still move on, on better terms.

“He did want to leave the club if they went down to the Championship and, for Leeds, staying up is better for them because they will get more money for him if they do sell him as a Premier League club rather than a Championship club.

“I think all signals seem to point at Raphinha probably no longer being a Leeds player next season.”

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How did Raphinha perform this season?

Raphinha scored 11 goals over the course of the 2021/22 campaign, while he also chipped in with a further three assists in 36 appearances.

That resulted in the wide-man, who joined in a £17million deal from Rennes less than two years ago, finishing the season as Leeds’ top scorer.

With his figures, attacking prowess and vast number of suitors, it will be difficult for Jesse Marsch – who was appointed as the Whites’ head coach in February – to replace Raphinha if he moves onto pastures new.

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