The Brazilian winger has been linked with a move away from Elland Road since March, with the chances of him staying with the Whites seeming to be a remote possibility this summer.
What’s the latest on Raphinha?
Both Chelsea and Barcelona are interested in a move for Raphinha, with the 25-year-old looking to move on from Elland Road this summer.
The Athletic have reported that Thomas Tuchel’s side are close to agreeing a fee north of £55m for the Leeds star, at which point the move will be purely based on the player’s preference, with Barcelona circling.
The same report also suggests that whilst there is an interest from Arsenal, the player is not convinced by a move to the Emirates.
And Thornton believes that Leeds will already have a list of targets prepared ahead of Raphinha’s likely departure.
What has Thornton said about Leeds?
He told GIVEMESPORT: “I think a shortlist will be in place already.
“I think conversations will have taken place already in terms of those ‘what if?’ conversations if Raphinha was to go.
“I think they’re going to look to move quickly to get players in.”
What next for Leeds?
With Raphinha’s departure from Elland Road becoming more and more likely every day, the Whites will be looking to try and bring in a replacement as quickly as possible, ahead of the Premier League kick-off in August.
Following Thornton’s comments, Fabrizio Romano has revealed that talks with Feyenoord over a deal for winger Luís Sinisterra are progressing.
The same tweet says that the deal for the Colombian will be a record-breaking incoming fee for the Dutch club, which could signal that the signing of the wide man will enable Raphinha to leave the club in the coming weeks.
Adama Traoré is another player that has been linked with a move to Leeds this summer, after the Wolverhampton Wanderers winger’s loan at Barcelona last season was not made into a permanent deal by the Catalan giants this summer, and with less than a year remaining on his deal at Molineux, Bruno Lage’s side could be tempted into a sale at a cut-price to prevent losing the speedster on a free transfer next summer.
Cody Gakpo has also been linked to an Elland Road move, with the PSV prospect thought of as a potential replacement for Leeds’ Brazilian superstar.
Whoever comes in and replaces Raphinha will have a tough act to follow, with the 25-year-old scoring 11 goals and providing four assists for Marco Bielsa and Jesse Marsch’s sides last season according to Transfermarkt, suggesting that despite playing in a struggling team, the nine-time Brazil international was still performing and producing to a high standard over the last campaign.
Leeds might be prepared to lose their Brazilian magician out on the wing for the upcoming season, but whether they are capable of replacing him is another question entirely.