The Brazilian has been in Yorkshire for less than two years, having joined in a £17million deal from Rennes, but it appears he may be heading onto pastures new during the upcoming transfer window.
What’s the latest news involving Raphinha?
It is understood that Barcelona are set to make their interest in Raphinha ‘formal’ in the coming days.
Leeds could have a tough job on their hands when it comes to attempting to persuade the winger to remain at Elland Road as, according to Spanish sources, he has already told the Premier League club’s hierarchy that he wants to head to the Nou Camp ahead of next season.
The report suggests Raphinha feels his time in England is over and the seven-cap Brazil international has made his intentions clear in a bid to speed up his exit.
He was also the subject of interest from West Ham United during the January transfer window, but the east Londoners saw a £50million bid turned down.
Raphinha has scored 17 goals and registered a further 12 assists in 67 Leeds appearances, while he also played a key role in his current employers finishing three points clear of the Premier League’s relegation zone this season.
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What has Pete O’Rourke said about Raphinha?
O’Rourke understands that Raphinha has his heart set on joining Barcelona during the summer transfer window, which officially opens next month.
The journalist feels the wide-man will get his wish as long as the La Liga giants meet Leeds’ financial expectations.
O’Rourke told GIVEMESPORT: “I think Raphinha has admitted that he would be interested in a move to Barcelona and Barcelona are keen to bring the Brazilian to the Nou Camp as well.
“I think this one could happen, especially if Barcelona do meet Leeds’ asking price. If they get close to £50million or £60million, I would fully expect this deal to happen.”
Are Leeds in a strong negotiating position?
Raphinha’s £63,000-per-week contract still has just over two years to run, so Leeds are not in an immediate need to sell their prised asset despite his wish to seal a move to Barcelona.
The Whites have been keen to tie the winger down to a fresh agreement, but they put discussions over a new deal on hold while their Premier League status was at risk.
While Leeds will be in the top flight next season, it appears Raphinha will not be willing to sign on the dotted line and Jesse Marsch, who was appointed as the Yorkshire giants’ head coach in February, could have a big decision to make.