The Magpies are believed to be in the market for attacking reinforcements but are far from alone in their admiration for the talented 25-year-old.
What is the latest news involving Raphinha?
David Ornstein of The Athletic recently revealed that Leeds have rejected Arsenal’s opening offer for Raphinha after it fell well below their valuation of the player.
It’s believed that Barcelona is the Brazil international’s destination of choice, although Premier League giants Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur are also keen to secure his signature.
Ornstein has since revealed that Arsenal are set to intensify their efforts to sign Raphinha, though, and have now become ‘firm favourites’ to tie up a deal.
Barca’s financial turmoil has made any potential move extremely complicated, and with Leeds accepting the South American will not sign a new contract, the Gunners are seemingly set to take advantage.
Transfer expert Fabrizio Romano has claimed that another meeting between Arsenal and Leeds has already been scheduled and that the west Yorkshire outfit will once again ask for £65 million.
What has Downie said about Raphinha?
The Mirror previously listed Newcastle amongst Raphinha potential suitors back in March, and it seems their intrigue in the player has never died.
In an interview with GiveMeSport, Downie disclosed the club’s affection for the technically gifted ace but admitted he’s ‘probably setting his sights a little bit higher’.
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He told GiveMeSport: “I think he’s definitely a player they’re interested in, but I think the best way of putting this is I think he’s probably setting his sights a little bit higher, with all due respect to Newcastle.
“I think Barcelona have made it pretty clear that they’re interested in him; I think that’s the sort of move he’d be up for.”
Who could Newcastle sign instead?
With the “sensational” Raphinha appearing to be out of Newcastle’s reach at this moment in time, Eddie Howe will surely have to focus his attention on alternative targets.
And according to i News, the North East outfit are closely monitoring the progress of OGC Nice youngster Amine Gouiri.
The 22-year-old registered 12 goals and 10 assists in 42 appearances last term and is comfortable playing on the left-wing or upfront, providing Howe with tactical flexibility.
It remains to be seen if Newcastle firm up their interest in the France Under-21 international, but his arrival would certainly soften the blow of missing out on Raphinha.